Telecom Alert: NTIA Spectrum Repurposing Proposal; USF Contribution Factor; ECF Funding; 900 MHz Applications Granted [Vol. XX, Issue 12]
NTIA Seeks 1,500 MHz Repurposing
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (“NTIA”) is working with the FCC to identify at least 1,500 megahertz of spectrum for in-depth study to determine whether the spectrum can be repurposed for more intensive use by federal and on-federal users. As part of this effort, NTIA issued a Request for Comment last week seeking input on the three pillars of its National Spectrum Strategy: creating a spectrum pipeline (which includes identifying federal and non-federal spectrum bands that could be re-allocated for new and additional uses); long-term spectrum planning (including how federal and non-federal users can coordinate for future spectrum sharing); and spectrum management (with a focus on research for technical advancements). Comments are due by April 17, 2023.
USF Contribution Factor
The FCC’s Office of Managing Director issued a Public Notice last week announcing that the proposed universal service contribution factor for the second quarter of 2023 will be 29% absent any action from the Commission. The 29% assessment on end-user interstate and international telecom service revenues is projected to meet the fourth quarter’s requirement of $1.951 billion for the four original universal service programs (E-Rate, rural health care, high-cost, and Lifeline) and the Connected Care Pilot Program.
The FCC announced that it is committing over $1.7 million in a new funding round through the Emergency Connectivity Program. The Commitment will support applications from all three filing windows and will support approximately 15 schools and two libraries. To date, the Commission has approved over $6.6 billion in funding commitments.
900 MHz Applications Granted
Last week, the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau issued a Public Notice granting two 900 MHz broadband segment license applications (Vol. XIX, Issue 47). The FCC realigned the 900 MHz band in May 2020 to make available six megahertz of low-band spectrum for the development of critical wireless broadband technologies and services, while reserving four megahertz of spectrum for continued narrowband operations. The Commission granted two applications of PDV Spectrum Holding Company, LLC for markets in Texas.
Thomas Magee, Tracy Marshall, Kathleen Slattery Thompson, Sean Stokes, and Wesley Wright also contributed to this article.