• The Judiciary Committee’s promised hearing on HR 3261, the Stop Online Piracy Act, which was previously announced for November 16, 2011 (see October 31 edition of This Week in Telecom), has not yet been confirmed by the Committee’s webpage.
  • Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., Chair of the House Commerce Committee, together with Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., have released statements on two bills aimed toward FCC reform. Chairman Walden introduced both bills. HR 3309, the FCC Process Reform Act of 2011, would include provisions mandating that comment cycles be no shorter than 30 days for initial comments and 30 days for reply comments, and a requirement that the FCC publish summaries of all items on circulation before the Commission and which Commissioners have failed to vote an item that has been pending 60 days or more. HR 3310, the Federal Communications Commission Consolidated Reporting Act, would require the FCC to release, in the last quarter of every even-numbered year, a report on the state of competition in the video programming, satellite, telecommunications, and mobile wireless markets. The report would also include findings under section 706 regarding access to advanced services, and whether any laws or regulations are acting as a barrier to entry into any communications market. Chairman Walden stated in support of the bills that “Taking a page from the President’s executive order, we have been examining ways to improve transparency and efficiency at the FCC. We have reached out to our Democratic colleagues, Chairman Genachowski, each commissioner, and job creators to identify what current FCC processes work and what can be improved.”

The Committee’s summary of the bills, along with Chairman Walden’s and Senator Heller’s full statements, is available here.

HR 3309 is available here.

HR 3310 is available here.