The trade group says it takes no issue with FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski setting plans for a spectrum auction – as long as stations have the right to participate on a voluntary basis. The commission is scheduled to vote on the chairman’s newly released proposal Sept. 28.
As expected, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski released a proposal to the FCC commissioners on how to go about auctioning off spectrum currently used by broadcast stations in order to expand the capacity for mobile broadband.
While the plan has not been circulated beyond the FCC, the National Association of Broadcasters issued a statement of tenative support: “NAB looks forward to working with the FCC and Congress to implement spectrum incentive auction legislation,” wrote executive vice president of communications Dennis Wharton.
“We have no quarrel with television stations choosing to voluntarily participate in the auction process. Our overriding objective remains the preservation of a vibrant future for free and local TV stations that serve tens of millions of Americans every day with quality entertainment, local news, the most popular sports and life-saving weather warnings.”
In an FCC press release Genachowski confirmed earlier reports that he is scheduling a vote on the proposal at the next commission meeting, Sept. 28th.
If adopted, the incentive auctions “will help create jobs and strengthen U.S. competitiveness in a world where, increasingly, mobile leadership is required,” Genechowski said in the release. “The proposal would also free up a significant amount of unlicensed spectrum for innovative WiFi-like uses, and create the first uniform, national low-band unlicensed spectrum in any country.