Parties Urge Transfer of Small Cell Appeals to Ninth Circuit

Twenty Western localities that have challenged the small cell order adopted by the FCC in September have asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit (Denver) to transfer six petitions for review to the Ninth Circuit (San Francisco).

Earlier this month, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation released an order consolidating the cases — which had been filed in the First (Boston), Second (New York), Ninth, and Tenth circuits — in the Tenth Circuit (TR Daily, Nov. 2).

A motion filed yesterday in consolidated cases beginning at 18-9563 cited a number of other localities and municipal groups that support the transfer of the cases to the Ninth Circuit but said the FCC opposes the transfer, as do petitioners Sprint Corp., Verizon Communications, Inc., and Puerto Rico Telephone Company, Inc., and intervenors CTIA and the Competitive Carriers Association. The filing said that the Department of Justice has not taken a position on the transfer motion. Continue reading

NTIA Gives Agencies Guidance on Reporting Future Spectrum Needs

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration has provided guidance to federal agencies to submit reports on their anticipated future spectrum requirements pursuant to a memorandum signed by President Trump last month directing the executive branch to develop a national spectrum strategy (TR Daily, Oct. 25).

In a memo dated Wednesday and released today, NTIA Administrator David J. Redl told agencies that they must submit initial reports by Feb. 21, 2019, and final reports by April 23, 2019, on their spectrum needs over the next 15 years.

“The federal spectrum assessment is one of several tasks in the Presidential Memorandum aimed at building a sustainable, forward-looking national strategy to ensure America’s continued leadership across technology sectors. Transparency in how spectrum is being utilized and collaboration among stakeholders are key elements of the Administration’s approach,” Mr. Redl said. “To that end, NTIA intends to post a public summary of the reports on its website to the extent permitted by law.”

“For this task, NTIA defines ‘future spectrum requirements’ as any additional spectrum access required when planned systems become operationally fielded during the time period specified below,” Mr. Redl said. “A planned system is a spectrum-dependent, communications- or noncommunications-based system that is at one of several stages of actual development (e.g., conceptual, research, testing, etc.), but is not yet operational. As such, a planned system does not yet have, but will need, final authorization to operate via NTIA’s spectrum certification and/or frequency assignment processes. It is important to ensure that future spectrum requirements are based on tangible and documented needs for each planned system. NTIA therefore requests that each agency provide requirements-type technical information and supporting documentation demonstrating, for example, that specific operating features have been identified, budgets have been approved for system-specific research and development, plans are in place for early-stage testing and evaluation, or significant steps have been taken toward acquisition and procurement of the planned system.” Continue reading

O’Rielly Provides Update on Anti-911 Fee Diversion Efforts

FCC Commissioner Mike O’Rielly today cited mixed results in an update today on his efforts to get states to stop diverting 911 fees for other purposes or to report to the FCC whether they do so or not.

“Of the five self-reported diverting states and seven states and territories that did not respond to the Commission’s inquiry (for a total of 12), two states (Illinois and Oklahoma) and one territory (Northern Mariana Islands) remedied filing errors to clarify that they are not diverters; one state (West Virginia) and one territory (Puerto Rico) are in the process of ending diversion within their borders; and one state (New Mexico) has ended its diversionary practices going forward,” Mr. O’Rielly said. “This leaves five states and one territory (New Jersey, Rhode Island, New York, Missouri, Montana, and Guam) that have not yet either provided the Commission with their 2016 state data or ended their explicit and despicable practice of stealing 9-1-1 fees for their own discretionary spending.”

He noted the introduction last summer of the 9-1-1 Fee Integrity Act (HR 6424), which is designed to prevent states from diverting 911 fees for other purposes (TR Daily, July 19).

“This is an important step. Once the Commission provides a clear definition of diversion, and states may no longer thwart consumer expectations by passing laws permitting such diversion, diversionary practices should decline,” the Commissioner said. “But a more comprehensive bill may be needed to deal with recalcitrant states committed to diversion.”- Paul Kirby,

Courtesy TRDaily

FCC Modifies Sprint’s 800 MHz Band Waiver

The Mobility Division of the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau today granted Sprint Corp. a waiver modification request to allow the carrier to deploy 800 megahertz band wideband operations in additional counties in the southern California NPSPAC before 800 MHz band retuning has been completed in the region. The waiver will allow Sprint to deploy LTE in portions of seven additional counties, including Los Angeles County, San Diego County, Riverside County, and San Bernardino County. Currently, Sprint is permitted to deploy LTE in portions of three counties north of Los Angeles.

Courtesy TRDaily


Rosenworcel, O’Rielly Stress Support for 5.9 GHz Band Rulemaking

FCC Commissioners Jessica Rosenworcel and Mike O’Rielly today reiterated their support for the FCC’s pursuit of a rulemaking to free up at least some of the 5.9 gigahertz band for unlicensed use, and they welcomed a study that estimated that allowing Wi-Fi operations in the band could add more than $100 billion annually to the U.S. gross domestic product.

During a joint appearance this afternoon at the Wi-Fi Summit, which was organized by WifiForward, Ms. Rosenworcel noted that she and Mr. O’Rielly both support taking a “fresh look” at the 5.9 GHz band, which is allocated to dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) technology, “and I think we need to do that sooner rather than later.”

“The message is resonating,” Mr. O’Rielly added.

Ms. Rosenworcel also called “extraordinary” the conclusion of a study released by the RAND Corp. today that estimated that opening the band for Wi-Fi could add from $59.8 billion to $105.8 billion to the annual U.S. GDP. The study also predicted that Wi-Fi use of the spectrum could also provide economic gains in consumer surplus and producer surplus of $82.2 billion to $189.9 billion. The study didn’t estimate the potential economic impact of continuing to use the 5.9 GHz band for DSRC operations.

Mr. O’Rielly said the study was “incredibly insightful” in providing information on the benefits to the public of Wi-Fi use of the 5.9 GHz band.

The RAND study, whose lead author was Diana Carew, an assistant policy researcher, was sponsored by the Comcast Innovation Fund. The cable industry is lobbying the FCC to open the spectrum to Wi-Fi use.

“RAND’s analysis demonstrates that the FCC could generate billions of dollars of value for the U.S. economy each year by opening the 5.9 GHz band to Wi-Fi. It also confirms that unlicensed spectrum is the incubator of wireless innovation, and at the center of the emerging Internet of things,” said Ellen Satterwhite, spokesperson for WifiForward, “This research is a leap forward in how we think about unlicensed and shared spectrum allocations and should be helpful to making balanced spectrum policymaking in the United States.” Continue reading

Andy Seybold’s Public Safety Advocate, November 11, 2018

Critical LTE Communications Forum and More.  This week’s Advocate is late since I attended and took part in the International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) Critical LTE Communications Forum. There were about 200 folks in attendance, all with a keen interest in broadband communications for public safety. The sessions were great for the most part but there were occasional topics where some speakers presented information or ideas that were simply wrong or conveyed advances as coming much faster than they actually will.

For some reason, neither FirstNet (Built by AT&T) nor the FirstNet Authority had any sponsorship or participation. However, there were FirstNet folks in the audience. This lack of FirstNet visibility allowed the first keynote by Verizon to contain comments that could have and should have been countered by FirstNet. These issues included sharing networks, how soon Verizon’s Mission-Critical Push-To-Talk (PTT) would come to its network, and then a plea for states to include a statement in their policy that would make it mandatory for full network interoperability.

Verizon’s take on Mission-Critical Push-To-Talk was that it would roll it out in 2019. Then, in the same sentence, stated this would soon be followed by off-network LTE or Proximity Services (ProSe). Neither of these statements is based on actual fact and later in the day during the PTT panel (see below), I finally heard that the first iteration of Mission-Critical PTT was nothing more than a first-generation product and it would be years before all the kinks had been worked out.
Read the Entire Post Here .

Here are the articles I have selected with the help of Discovery Patterns artificial intelligence

Fiber forward: FCC awards waiver for county broadband project Continue reading

Andy Seybold’s Public Safety Advocate, November 1, 2018

LMR, FirstNet, WiFi, Just to be Clear, and More. Last week’s Advocate discussed the integration, over time, of NG9-1-1, FirstNet, Land Mobile Radio (LMR), and WiFi into a homogenous communications system for public safety. Before last week, I had written multiple Advocates about LMR and FirstNet working hand-in-hand and in recent months I have been promoting a way to integrate FirstNet, LMR, and WiFi into a solid, interactive communications platform for all of the public safety community.

It was, therefore, a shock to me to read a response to last week’s Advocate from a gentleman I have conversed with and met on several occasions. The response to my columns is moderated on but I have never chosen to not accept any comment, good or bad, as that goes with the territory.

Editor’s Note: Unfortunately, after I approved the comment for inclusion at the bottom of the Advocate and typed in my response, the site went down. The web folks were able to save a copy of the comment and my response, which is directly below:

“Welcome back Andy, I have been a little disappointed in the past few articles since they have been focused on FirstNet and the possibilities making it seem like you were advocating to replace LMR today. I agree that the current radio will evolve to include data/text/video, but as you stated in todays article, it will be a while until all the pieces fit together.”

My response: “First of all thank you for the comment but I am horrified that anyone reading my Advocate would believe that I am about replacing LMR with FirstNet, I think you will find that I have always stated that LMR is a vital and important part of overall public safety communications. I have been very vocal in my call for LMR to LTE PTT solutions and I have, I thought been very clear about the fact that LMR is a vital portion of the public safety communications picture and will be for many, many Years. Best regards, Andy”

The comments he made indicated that even though he was a long-time reader he apparently thought that in a number of my articles I was making a case for FirstNet as the only network for public safety. This is what surprised me. I have, for many, many years, said that FirstNet and LMR (and WiFi) will work in concert with each other and that LMR has a long life left within the public safety community. In the most recent hurricanes, both LMR and FirstNet were up and running and where one was not, the other was. So, to be very clear, my vision of public safety going forward is robust and up-to-date NG9-1-1 systems, LMR, FirstNet, and WiFi where available. I believe this will provide the best of all worlds.
Read the Entire Post Here . Continue reading