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November 21, 2012

Inside The Beltway 11/21/12

Responding to the FCC’s proposed order related to rules that would, if approved by the full commission, govern 40 megahertz of broadband-ready AWS-4 wireless spectrum controlled by DISH Network Corporation, R. Stanton Dodge, DISH executive vice president/general counsel, says, “While the FCC’s proposed order, based on reported accounts, does properly address some of the opportunities with this spectrum, it’s significantly flawed by introducing serious limitations that impair its utility. While the FCC would grant full terrestrial rights, its proposal to lower our power and emissions levels could cripple our ability to enter the business.” He continues, “The good news is that this proposed order is not final, and we urge Chairman Genachowski and the commissioners to recognize that the DISH plan delivers on the greatest public interest – the most investment, the most jobs and the most spectrum. We stand ready to work with the full Commission on final rules that put the full AWS-4 spectrum to work for America and that advance the future potential of the H block.” According to DISH, in its draft order, the FCC “appears to back a proposal, advanced solely by Sprint, calling on DISH to disable 25 percent of its uplink spectrum and impair another 25 percent of that spectrum to accommodate possible future use of neighboring H block spectrum by Sprint.” Dodge adds, “Sprint’s position on the H block would render useless 25 percent of DISH’s uplink spectrum – so that Sprint is positioned to merely gain the exact same amount of spectrum. This is a zero-sum approach that does not result in a net spectrum gain for the American consumer when the wireless economy needs access to all available spectrum. Nor does this approach add jobs”…FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is planning field hearings to look at the performance of U.S. communications networks in the wake of Superstorm Sandy, and to get some help at improving response. Beginning early next year, hearings will take place in locations that have experienced major natural disasters, starting in New York. Speakers will include businesses, public-safety officials, engineering and academic experts, consumers and other stakeholders. “This unprecedented storm has revealed new challenges that will require a national dialogue around ideas and actions to ensure the resilience of communications networks,” the chairman stated. “I want to thank Sen. Chuck Schumer for his leadership and welcome his call for the commission to develop a roadmap for how to better protect critical communications functions during major disasters.” Adds Schumer, "Field hearings will increase our understanding of the problems encountered during Superstorm Sandy and harvest the best ideas to ensure that mobile phone service doesn't fail after future storms. Mobile communication has become an essential part of our lives, and increasing its reliability must be a top priority.”







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