BDAC Disaster Recovery Working Group

The Commission last week announced the formation of a new “Disaster Response and Recovery Working Group” of the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC). As explained in its Public Notice and News Release, the working group is charged with recommending “actions that can be taken to more quickly restore broadband infrastructure following a disaster.” Chairman Pai is asking the working group to develop “best practices for coordination among wireless providers, backhaul providers, and power companies during and after a disaster.”

California Will Not Enforce New Internet Regulations

California has agreed not to enforce its new net neutrality law while the FCC’s Restoring Internet Freedom Order is pending before the D.C. Circuit, and, if aggrieved parties seek and obtain review before the Supreme Court, until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the further appeals. The agreement follows a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice in September, which alleged that California’s recently enacted net neutrality law is unlawful and preempted by the Restoring Internet Freedom Order (Vol. XV, Issue 41).

Legal Challenges to FCC’s Small Cell Order

Five different appeals of the FCC’s controversial Small Cell Order filed in the First, Second, Ninth, and Tenth Circuits have been consolidated and will be heard by the Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in Denver, Colorado (Vol. XV, Issue 43). In addition, a group comprised of the National League of Cities, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the National Association of Counties, the National Association of Regional Councils, the National Association of Towns and Townships, and over 50 individual cities, towns, and counties filed a Motion for Stay of the Order last week.

User Guide Available for Spectrum Frontiers Auction

On October 30, the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB) announced the availability of the Auction Bidding System User Guide for the upcoming “spectrum frontier” auctions of almost six thousand Upper Microwave Flexible Use Service (UMFUS) licenses in the 27.5-28.35 GHz (28 GHz); 24.25-24.45 GHz; and 24.75-25.25 GHz (24 GHz) bands (Auction 101) (Vol. XV, Issue 42). The Guide provides detailed instructions for bidding and viewing round results, and it includes specifications for data file formats. Bidding in Auction 101 is scheduled to begin on Wednesday, November 14.

Hurricane Michael Disaster Information Reporting System Deactivated

At the request of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s National Coordinating Center for Communications and FEMA, the FCC announced the deactivation of its Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS) for Hurricane Michael (Vol. XV, Issue 43). The FCC will continue to monitor the status of communications services and provide support to providers and government partners as needed for remaining restoration efforts. The FCC’s final daily status report for Hurricane Michael was released on October 26, disclosing 12 percent of cell sites out of service in Bay County and 14 percent of cell sites out of service in Gulf County.