FCC MCLM Case Dismissed

The FCC issued an Order of Dismissal last week resolving the long-standing Maritime Communications/Land Mobile (MCLM) proceeding (Vol. XIV, Issue 8). The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau and MCLM entered a joint stipulation regarding the operational status of MCLM’s final 16 site-based licenses that remained in dispute. However, the FCC has still not approved the applications to assign portions of the licenses MCLM originally partitioned and sold to various critical infrastructure industry companies several years ago. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (wright@khlaw.com; 202.434.4239) or Al Catalano (catalano@khlaw.com; 202.434.4207).

FCC Targets Landowner in Pirate Radio Action

Last week, the Federal Communications Commission issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture proposing a monetary forfeiture of $144,344 against several individuals in Florida for operating an unlicensed FM radio station. This fine is the highest permitted under the Communications Act. This case is unique because, in addition to fining the operators of the station, the Commission also issued a fine to the owners of the land from which the operators broadcasted. The Commission alleges that the land owners, “supported, participated in, and acquiesced to the unlicensed radio station’s operation.” For these reasons the Commission included them in the enforcement action. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (wright@khlaw.com; 202.434.4239).

Senate Vote on Chairman Pai’s Nomination

The U.S. Senate plans to hold an executive session today on FCC Chairman Pai’s nomination for another term. Earlier this summer, the Senate Commerce Committee approved Pai’s nomination but the full Senate has not yet acted. In other news, the Senate Commerce Committee plans to hold an executive session on Oct. 4 to consider David Redl’s nomination to head the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA). The confirmation has been held up primarily due to Senator Cruz’s concerns about Redl’s position on the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) transition. If the Committee has elected to put this item on the agenda, then it is likely that Senator Cruz’s concerns have been resolved. For more information, please contact Kathleen Slattery (slattery@khlaw.com; 202.434. 4244).

911 Access NOI Adopted; Comment Date Set

The Commission adopted the 911 Access NOI at the September Open Commission Meeting. The NOI aims at gathering information to examine how 911 calls are treated when completed by an Enterprise Communications System (Vol. XIV, Issue 37). Comments are due November 15 and Reply Comments are due December 15. For more information, please contact Wes Wright (wright@khlaw.com; 202.434.4239) or Doug Jarrett (jarrett@khlaw.com; 202.434.4180).

FirstNet Update

Louisiana became the 22nd state to opt-into FirstNet. Also, last week Georgia became the 13th state to begin a procurement process to identify possible alternatives to FirstNet. Georgia released the RFP last week, and bids are due by October 24. Additionally, a Senior Vice President at Verizon published an Op-Ed, explaining how Verizon’s network will be interoperable with FirstNet. For more information, please contact Al Catalano (catalano@khlaw.com; 202.434.4207).