T-Band Traction

On August 2, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) with co-sponsors Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Bob Casey (D-Penn.), and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) introduced S.3347, entitled “Don’t Break Up the T-Band Act of 2018.” The bill, like its House counterpart (H.R. 5085), would repeal section 6103 in Title VI of P.L. 112-96, a provision of the 2012 Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act, which directs the FCC to begin an auction of the T-band spectrum (470–512 MHz) by February 21, 2021, and clear public safety operations from the band within 2 years of auction close. The House version of the bill now has bi-partisan support by 19 co-sponsors.  EWA is seeking members to lobby Senators for support of the bill. (PS 13-42)

On August 6, EWA met with representatives from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to discuss challenges in relocating public safety users from the T-Band spectrum and similarly, how Business/Industrial Land Transportation (B/ILT) users will be affected by a T-Band spectrum auction. Through this discussion, GAO is gathering critical information for the benefit of Congress as it considers the effects of repurposing the T-Band. As requested by GAO, EWA provided contact information for B/ILT licensees in a few sample markets that will be affected directly by the auction.

The Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and PSHSB have not responded to the request by the Land Mobile Communications Council (LMCC) to relax the T-Band application freeze to allow incumbents to relocate/add sites without regard to their current contours and to relocate, exchange, and add frequencies. EWA will meet with FCC staff regarding this request later in August.

Category: EWA On Your Side