Shutdown or No, FCC Will Hold Jan. 30 Meeting

The FCC said it plans to proceed with the scheduled Jan. 30 public meeting, but it will be pretty much of a pro forma exercise since there will be no votes on any of the agenda items.

"There is a requirement in the Communications Act that the FCC meet monthly," said an FCC spokesperson.

That means there will be a meeting whether or not the partial government shutdown ends before that time.

Related: Closed: Shutdown Slows Tech Approvals, M&A

The meeting will begin at 11 a.m. ET rather than 10:30 a.m.

If the shutdown is not over, the meeting will be via conference call, audio only. If the government reopens, it will be at FCC headquarters, but will still be announcements only with none of the items on the Jan. 3, 2019, tentative agenda up for consideration. There will be audio and video of the meeting streamed over the internet as well if the government is back open for business.

Related: FCC to Shutter Most Operations Jan. 3

The five commissioners are considered essential personnel so have remained on the job, as have staffers dealing with the ongoing 28 GHz spectrum auction and other auction-related items, since they are not paid out of the appropriations currently held up by the battle between and within Congress and the White House over border security.

The commission also last week re-started its equipment authorization system (EAS), at least for non-complex authorizations that require staff review.

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.