A draft report approved Wednesday by the Spectrum Management Advisory Committee of the Commerce Department calls for the establishment of multiple “test beds” in various geographic areas that would promote sharing of spectrum between government and private sector users. The report responds to one of the tenets of the Bush Administration’s 2004 spectrum policy initiative, which called on both the FCC and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)—the agency tasked with overseeing government spectrum use—to identify 10 MHz of spectrum to be used for a test-bed program. Last year, the FCC and NTIA issued notices of inquiry (NOIs) on the establishment of a test-bed program, and sources say many of the recommendations outlined in the committee’s report mirror comments submitted in response to the NOIs. Although the draft report does not recommend specific frequencies, it concludes that channels below 1 GHz and above 4.9 GHz would provide the “optimal” environment for test-bed operations. The report also suggests that, in the initial stages, test beds should operate “in less congested spectrum environments” and that two technologies meeting all of the selection criteria proposed by NTIA in its NOI—broadband services and adaptive radio technologies—should be subject to initial studies. In the event that multiple test beds are established, spectrum sharing between government users and airborne video, mobile satellite services and ancillary terrestrial components should next be explored. While noting that test-bed applicants “must demonstrate that the proposed experiment will not cause harmful interference to any incumbent operator,” the report acknowledges that the government lacks the resources to support multiple test beds and therefore suggests that the NTIA “evaluate whether . . . staffing and resource issues could be resolved by allowing private sector participants to bear the costs associated with the test-bed.”