Pole Attachment Bill of Rights for Electric Utilities

Pole attachment rulings from the FCC and elsewhere promote communications services at the expense of electric utilities and their ratepayers.  With so many rulings explaining what utilities may not do, it is important to understand what utilitiesmay do in constructing, operating and maintaining their pole distribution systems.   The “Pole Attachment Bill of Rights for Electric Utilities,” drafted by K&H Partners Jack Richards and Tom Magee, is intended to provide a much-needed counterbalance to anti-utility developments at the FCC and elsewhere.

FCC/OSHA Tower Workshop

Last week, the FCC issued a Public Notice announcing the agenda for the second joint workshop on tower climber safety between the Commission and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).  The workshop will focus on best practices for improving tower climber safety, comments received in response to OSHA’s Request for Information on communication tower safety, and joint efforts to reduce tower-related fatalities and injuries.  It will be held on February 11, 2016, at the Commission’s offices in Washington, D.C.

FAA Provides Drone Registration Update

Last month, the FAA issued a press release disclosing that almost 300,000 owners of small unmanned aircraft (drones) registered their aircraft with the agency via its online registration system.  The FAA’s rule requiring hobbyists to register their drones took effect on December 21, 2015, and applies to aircraft weighing less than 55 pounds.  The FAA currently is working to make the online registration system available for non-model aircraft users – such as commercial operators – by March 21, 2016.

Complimentary Spectrum Webinar

On Thursday, February 11, 2016, Keller and Heckman attorneys, Greg Kunkle and Jack Richards will host a complimentary webinar providing an update on spectrum at the FCC.  The webinar will cover FCC spectrum policy, the 800 and 900 MHz land mobile bands, the Broadcast Incentive Auction, new rules for fixed telemetry units in the 173 MHz band, and the impact of the longstanding MCLM hearing on the AMTS band.

KH Article - The Internet of Things: A World of Compliance Challenges

Keller and Heckman’s privacy and data security practice published an article last month highlighting the security issues and regulatory environment surrounding the Internet of Things.  The article highlights the FTC’s action last year with the publication of a staff report, Internet of Things: Privacy & Security in a Connected World, and the Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force.