House Energy Committee Leaders Request GAO Review of NTIA, FCC
Friday, January 24, 2020 | Comments

Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr. and Rep. Greg Walden sent a bipartisan letter to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) urging the government watchdog to conduct an updated review of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) federal spectrum management processes.

Pallone and Walden asked GAO to consider as part of its review how federal spectrum users interact with NTIA and the FCC, how the NTIA and FCC interact with each other, and the recent federal spectrum management process breakdowns.

“Last year, it was clear that the federal spectrum management process broke down,” the letter said. “Rather than working through the NTIA as the central repository and manager of federal spectrum, we are concerned that many of the federal agencies with spectrum allocations may have circumvented this statutory process.”

Pallone and Walden said the recent federal spectrum management process breakdowns played out in multiple arenas, including the debate leading up to the National Defense Authorization Act, the 2.5 GHz FCC docket, the 24 GHz FCC auction and elsewhere.

“Inefficient management and chaotic processes ensued, which among other things, undermined the U.S. government’s efforts in international spectrum coordination proceedings,” the letter said. “We request that GAO evaluate how the NTIA, the FCC and federal spectrum users are coordinating to ensure the nation’s airwaves are used to their utmost potential.”

The full letter is here.

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