House E&C Nails Down FCC Oversight Hearing

The House Energy & Commerce Committee Communications Subcommittee has slated a time for next week's FCC oversight hearing. 

The hearing will be Dec. 5 at 10 a.m. with all five commissioners--FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, fellow Republicans Michael O'Rielly and Brendan Carr, and Democrats Jessica Rosenworcel and Geoffrey Starks.  

The subcommittee's last FCC oversight hearing was May 15.  

“The FCC is considering a number of actions that could have serious consequences for the American people,” Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) and Communications Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) said in a joint statement last week. “As the Committee with jurisdiction over the FCC, we must ensure the Commission is fulfilling its mission to protect consumers and act in the public interest." 

More info, including the Committee Memorandum and witness testimony, will be available at this link closer to the hearing date.  

They did not say which actions they were referring to, and a spokesperson for the subcommittee had no comment, but clearly one of them is the decision by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, revealed to Hill leaders Monday (Nov. 18), to hold a public auction of C-Band spectrum. Legislators are probably generally happy with that choice over a private auction, but may have some questions about the auction framework and timing. 

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.