May 26, 2022

Volume XII, Number 146

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Telecom Alert: Draft MTE Competition Report and Order; Affordable Connectivity Program Rules Released; FCC Urges Review of Cybersecurity Practices; NASNA Petition for Rulemaking [Vol. XIX, Issue 4]

Draft MTE Competition Report and Order

Last week, the FCC announced that Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel circulated a draft Report and Order and Declaratory ruling with the Commissioners that aims to promote competition and increase choice for broadband services for people living and working in multiple tenant environments (“MTEs”).  If adopted, the Order would (1) prohibit providers from entering into graduated revenue sharing agreements or exclusive revenue sharing agreements with a building owner; (2) require providers to disclose to tenants in plain language the existence of exclusive marketing arrangements they have with building owners; and (3) clarify that existing rules prohibit sale-and-leaseback arrangements.

Affordable Connectivity Program Rules Released

Last week, the FCC released the Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking adopting the final rules for the Affordable Connectivity Program (the “Program”) (Vol. XIX, Issue 3).  The Program, which builds upon the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (“EBB Program”), offers eligible low-income households discounts off the cost of broadband service and connected devices.  To date, roughly 265,000 households have enrolled in the Program and more than nine million EBB Program households have transitioned.  

FCC Urges Review of Cybersecurity Practices

The FCC issued a Public Notice last week encouraging communications companies to review a recent cybersecurity advisory warning U.S. critical infrastructure operators of potential cyber threats from Russia.  The advisory, which was authored by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (“CISA”), Federal Bureau of Investigation, and National Security Agency, provides an overview of Russian state-sponsored cyber operations and mitigation techniques organizations can implement to protect themselves. The FCC urges all communications companies to notify CISA of cyber threats and share threat information with CISA and other industry stakeholders. 

NASNA Petition for Rulemaking

Several 911-related agencies and groups have offered support for the National Association of State 911 Administrators’ (“NASNA”) Petition requesting Commission action to facilitate Next Generation 911 (“NG911”) (Vol. XVIII, Issue 52).  NENA, the 9-1-1 Association, filed comments stating that the 911 industry would benefit greatly from the predictability and accountability that would come from FCC oversight of NG911 services and urges the Commission to conduct a rulemaking to determine its jurisdiction.  The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials, International (“APCO”) asks the FCC to conduct a Notice of Inquiry to gather information on the extent to which service providers prioritize 911 communications and the feasibility of prioritizing new types of communication.  Reply comments are due by February 3, 2022.  

Gregory E. Kunkle, Casey Lide, Thomas B. Magee, Tracy P. Marshall, Kathleen Slattery Thompson, Sean A. Stokes, and Wesley K. Wright also contributed to this article.

© 2022 Keller and Heckman LLPNational Law Review, Volume XII, Number 25
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About this Author

Paralegal

Jaimy “Sindy” Alarcon is a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Licensing Specialist.

Sindy works in conjunction with the attorneys in the Telecommunications Practice to prepare FCC applications for clients seeking authority for new services, modifications, administrative updates, license cancellations, Requests for Special Temporary Authority (STA), Requests for Rule Waivers, Assignments of Authorization, Transfers of Control, Renewals, and Notifications of Construction for various radio services including microwave, land mobile, marine...

202-434-4100
Jim Baller Communications Attorney Keller & Heckman Washington, DC
Partner

James (Jim) Baller represents clients across the U.S. in a broad range of communications matters including high-capacity broadband network projects, public-private broadband partnerships, telecommunications, wireless facility siting, right-of-way management, pole and conduit attachments, and barriers to community broadband initiatives.

Jim was the founder and president of the U.S. Broadband Coalition, a diverse group of more than 160 communications service providers, high technology companies, labor unions, public interest and consumer groups, state and local government entities,...

202-434-4175
Law Graduate

Jason Chun is a Law Graduate with our Telecommunications practice (not yet licensed to practice law as he awaits admittance under the D.C. Bar's Emergency Examination Waiver).

202-434-4491
Timothy A. Doughty, Keller Heckman, Telecommunications Licensing Specialist, Lawyer, FCC Matters Attorney
Associate

Timothy Doughty joined Keller and Heckman in 2009 as a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Licensing Specialist.

Mr. Doughty assists clients with the preparation of FCC applications, modifications, special temporary authorities, requests for rule waiver, renewals and spectrum leases in various radio services including Private Land Mobile, Microwave, Coast and Ground and Aircraft. His capabilities also include the preparation of tower registrations with the FCC and Obstruction Evaluations and Aeronautical Studies with the Federal Aviation...

202.434.4271
Michael T. N. Fitch, Keller Heckman, Wireless Communications Attorney
Senior Counsel

Michael Fitch has over 40 years of experience in wireless, international, infrastructure and other telecommunications regulatory areas.  Mr. Fitch advises clients on a wide range of issues in these areas.

Mr. Fitch began his career at the Federal Communications Commission, where he advanced from staff attorney to Bureau Chief and Senior Legal and International Advisor to the Chairman. He also served as a Presidential Exchange Executive from the FCC to the Westinghouse Electric Corporation in Pittsburgh for one year. 

He...

202-434-4264
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