Plans announced earlier this year by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)  to transfer oversight of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to the global community may be impacted by amended provisions of appropriations legislation, passed by the House last Friday that prohibits NTIA from spending its funds in furtherance of that plan. Adopted by a 321-87 margin, the bill provides $51.2 billion in total discretionary funding for FY 2015 out of which $36.7 million would be earmarked for NTIA. A non-profit corporation tasked with managing the international web domain name system, ICANN was contracted by the Department of Commerce (DOC) in 1998 to operate the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) on behalf of the U.S. government. ICANN’s current agreement with the DOC is due to expire in September 2015. Acting on behalf of the DOC in response to growing international concerns over the U.S. government’s role in managing the structure of the Internet, NTIA Administrator Larry Strickling confirmed in March that his agency had asked ICANN to develop a plan for transitioning U.S. government oversight over ICANN’s IANA-related functions that would (1) support and enhance the multi- stakeholder model of web governance on which the Internet was built, (2) maintain the security and resiliency of DNS, (3) satisfy the needs and expectations of global customers and partners, and (4) maintain “the openness of the Internet.” Specifically, the amendment in question, which passed by a vote of 229-178, prohibits the use of NTIA funding “to relinquish the responsibility of NTIA with respect to Internet domain name system functions, including responsibility with respect to the authoritative root zone file and the [IANA] functions.” Arguing that the proposed transition of ICANN oversight “represents a significant public policy change” that “should be preceded by an open and transparent process,” a House Appropriations Committee report accompanying the legislation explains that the proposed funding ban will permit web domain oversight issues to be “considered more fully by the Congress.” The bill is now slated for Senate review.