EWA to File on PAL Areas

On October 24, the FCC adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) regarding its 3.5 GHz rules, and at the same time terminated the Petitions for Rulemaking filed by CTIA and T-Mobile related to the band, except as their proposals are under consideration in the new NPRM. The changes under consideration all relate to Priority Access Licenses (PALs) that will be auctioned in the 3550-3700 MHz band, and include longer license terms, renewability, larger geographic areas, and auction methodology. EWA is reviewing the NPRM and is considering commenting on license size for PALs, which, at present, authorize use by census tract. CTIA and T-Mobile had requested that licenses be issued for Partial Economic Areas (PEAs), the 416 service areas used in the recent Incentive Auction, a proposal that drew substantial opposition. In general, carriers want longer terms and larger areas while entities such as Google want the FCC to stick with census tracts.  It is not clear how or that any changes in the PAL licensing process will impact incumbents in the 3.65 GHz band. Comments will be due 30 days and Reply Comments 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. (GN Docket No. 17-258; DA 17-340; DA 17-609)


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