WASHINGTON, May 15, 2020—Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai
today reiterated his call for Congressional repeal of the T-band auction mandate, a requirement
of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 (the Spectrum Act). Earlier
today, he circulated to his fellow Commissioners a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM),
which would take the next statutorily required step to implement this mandate. The Chairman
issued the following statement:
“An FCC auction of the T-band is a bad idea. But as of today, the law mandates that we do it.
It’s unfortunate that Commission resources must be dedicated to laying the groundwork for an
auction that will likely fail. This is especially true at a time when we are making every effort
to keep Americans safe and connected, including allowing expanded temporary use of this very
spectrum to help first responders save lives.
“Fortunately, there is bipartisan legislation in Congress to repeal this mandate, including bills
that couple repeal with 911 fee diversion reform as reported out by the Committee on
Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the U.S. Senate and the Subcommittee on
Communications and Technology of the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the U.S.
House of Representatives. I hope legislation passes soon so first responders who rely on this
spectrum no longer need to worry about a potential loss of or significant disruption to their
mission-critical radio systems. I remain committed to helping Congress in any way I can to
ensure that such harms to public safety operations do not come to pass.”