Positive Development - Senators Wicker and Thune, FCC Chairman Pai Call for Public Auction, Etc. for C-band
Washington, DC, November 18, 2019 – Senators Wicker and Thune today released draft legislation that would require a public auction of 280 MHz of C-band spectrum. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai also noted today that he will seek to auction off 280 MHz of C-band via an FCC run public auction. Importantly, he said that one of the guiding principles for the public auction would be to “ensure continued delivery of services currently using the C-band.” He also pointed out that an important goal for the auction would be “preserving availability of the upper 200 MHz of the band for continued delivery of programming.”
“We thank Senators Wicker and Thune, and Chairman Pai for their focus on good spectrum policy. The Chairman’s statement and his guiding principles for the auction are good news for the fixed wireless industry and rural Americans,” said Louis Peraertz, WISPA’s VP of Policy. “One of the services currently using the C-band is point-to-point fixed wireless services. With the announcement, WISPA believes it leaves open the possibility that with a few technical rule changes, the FCC could easily and quickly permit new coordinated point-to-multi-point uses, both protecting the delivery of programming and expeditiously bridging digital divides in rural areas.”
Added Peraertz, “We are greatly encouraged by these positive developments, and we hope the FCC takes the additional step of promoting more fixed wireless sharing in the C-band so that more rural Americans can quickly access the Internet via 5G or other high-speed broadband services.”
WISPA’s approximately 800 members are composed of fixed Wireless Internet Service Providers (WISPs) and the industry that supports fixed wireless broadband, including equipment suppliers, support services, and other components needed to run a successful business. Our members, and WISPs, in general, provide broadband access to over 4 million residential and business customers, often in exclusively rural areas.