In another development that relates to the U.S. Supreme Court, the FCC told the high court that the Third Circuit Court of Appeals was correct when it declined to impose the “extraordinarily destructive remedy” of invalidating the results of the 2006 AWS-1 and 2008 700 MHz auctions in spite of that court’s determination that modifications to the designated entity (DE) rules adopted by the FCC in advance of those auctions violated the notice and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). Earlier this week, the FCC filed its brief addressing a Supreme Court petition filed last December by Council Tree Investors, Bethel Native Corporation and the Minority Media & Telecommunications Council. The petition seeks the overturn of the Third Circuit’s decision to allow the results of the aforementioned auctions to stand. Notwithstanding that court’s remand of the modified DE rules that imposed new resale and leasing restrictions on DEs, the appellate panel rejected the petitioners’ demand to overturn the auctions upon concluding that such a step would unwind more than $33 billion in investments and create massive uncertainty throughout the wireless industry. Writing in support of the Third Circuit, the FCC told the Supreme Court justices that the Third Circuit’s ruling “does not conflict with any decision of this court or another court of appeals.” Adding that the petitioners did not contend that Section 706(2) of the APA “required the auctions to be unwound once a procedural defect in the DE rules was identified,” the FCC further maintained that the petitioners’ claim that Section 706 warranted mandatory vacatur of the auction results “was made exclusively in service of their argument that the DE rules themselves should be vacated, rather than merely remanded.” The FCC also warned that “taking away spectrum licenses years after the auctions were held, the licenses had issued, companies had spend billions of dollar building facilities, and millions of customers had begun utilizing resulting services would significantly undermine confidence in the auction system . . . and make bidders significantly less likely to participate in the future.”