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Telecom Alert - CAF II Reverse Auction Rules Finalized; Wireless Emergency Alert Update; DHHS to Address Cell Phone Radiation; FCC Creates Office of Economics and Analytics; Webinar: Qualifying and Bidding in the CAF II Reverse - Vol. XV, Issue 6

CAF II Reverse Auction Rules Finalized

The FCC adopted two Connect America Phase II (CAF II) Auction items.  The Order on Reconsideration resolves petitions regarding “how to compare bids of different performance levels, standalone voice requirements, and eligible areas, among other matters.”  The Public Notice announced the auction’s start date is scheduled for July 24, 2018.  The all-important, updated Technical Guidance on bidding procedures is available here.  

Wireless Emergency Alert Update

The FCC unanimously adopted a Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) Report and Order that will require participating wireless providers to target emergency alerts over precise geographic areas.  The Order extends the length of alert messages to 360 characters, and requires that emergency alerts remain available to consumers for 24 hours after an incident.  Providers are expected to comply by November 30, 2019 unless technologically incapable.  This action follows a report presented last week at the FCC’s monthly meeting outlining the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau’s investigation into Hawaii’s false ballistic missile alert.  

DHHS to Address Cell Phone Radiation

On February 2, 2018, the National Toxicology Program (NTP) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released two Draft NTP Technical Reports on Cell Phone Radiofrequency Radiation (RFR). NTP will hold a Peer Review of the Draft Reports, which study effects of radiation on mice and rats, on March 28, 2018 in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.  Participants can attend in person or by webcast to present oral comments.  Public comment submissions will be accepted until March 12, 2018. 

FCC Creates Office of Economics and Analytics

The FCC adopted an Order establishing the Office of Economics and Analysis.  The Order incorporates the proposals from the Staff Report released mid-January (Vol. XV, Issue 3), and eliminated the existing Office of Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis.  The new office is intended to “ensure that economic analysis is deeply and consistently incorporated as part of the agency’s regular operations.”  The vote split along party lines, with Commissioners Rosenworcel and Clyburndissenting, claiming that the proposal lacked specificity and will be a “mechanism to justify [the FCC’s] interests, while disregarding any analysis that runs counter to their views.”  

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C. Douglas Jarrett, Keller Heckman, telecommunications lawyer, procurement law

Douglas Jarrett joined Keller and Heckman in 1979. Mr. Jarrett specializes in telecommunications law, policy and procurement matters.

Mr. Jarrett is a recognized expert in representing enterprises in negotiating telecommunications services agreements with the major wireline and wireless carriers, domestically and globally.  He also advises enterprises on M2M services, cloud computing and IVR technology procurements. 

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Gregory E. Kunkle, Keller Heckman, regulatory attorney, FCC lawyer

Gregory Kunkle joined Keller and Heckman in 2006. Mr. Kunkle practices in the area of telecommunications, with an emphasis on assisting corporate clients and trade associations with various legal and regulatory matters before the Federal Communications Commission.

Mr. Kunkle regularly counsels critical infrastructure companies, such as electric utilities, oil and gas companies, and railroads, public safety agencies, and commercial providers regarding FCC wireless licensing and compliance issues.  He assists clients in identifying and acquiring wireless spectrum through a variety of means, including spectrum leasing, purchase and sale of licenses, and the FCC's auction process. His spectrum acquisition practice spans all of the FCC’s wireless frequency allocations, including the 220 MHz band, AMTS (217/219 MHz), VHF/UHF Part 22 Paging, the 1.4 GHz band, Part 90 800/900 MHz bands, MAS, the 2.5 GHz EBS/BRS band, and the 700 MHz band.

Mr. Kunkle counsels clients that become involved in the FCC's enforcement process including by responding to and vigorously defending against complaints and investigations and, where appropriate, negotiating settlements with the Commission. 

Thomas B. Magee, Keller Heckman, transactional counsel, litigation attorney, FCC law, safety violation lawyer

Thomas Magee joined Keller and Heckman in 2000. Mr. Magee provides regulatory, transactional and litigation counsel to investor-owned electric utilities, electric cooperatives and municipalities regarding pole attachments and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) licensing of private wireless telecommunications services.

Mr. Magee has helped to resolve dozens of pole attachment disputes affecting make-ready costs, safety violations, unauthorized attachments, annual rental rates and other terms and conditions of access. He negotiates,...

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Tracy Marshall assists clients with a range of business and regulatory matters.

In the business and transactional area, Ms. Marshall advises for-profit and non-profit clients on corporate organization, operations, and governance matters, and assists clients with structuring and negotiating a variety of transactions, including purchase and sale, marketing, outsourcing, and e-commerce agreements.

In the privacy, data security, and advertising areas, she helps clients comply with privacy, data security, and consumer protection laws, including laws governing telemarketing and...

Wesley K. Wright, Keller Heckman, Telecommunications Lawyer, FCC Enforcement Attorney, DC

Wesley Wright joined Keller and Heckman in 2006 and practices in the areas of telecommunications law.  He assists corporate clients and trade associations with various legal and regulatory matters before the Federal Communications Commission, Federal Aviation Administration, courts and state agencies.

Mr. Wright’s practice includes private wireless licensing, FCC enforcement, and related transactional matters.  He counsels clients on internal operations and governance matters and has drafted and negotiated asset purchase agreements,...