Senate vote puts FCC at full strength - Mobile World Live

Senate vote puts FCC at full strength

03 JAN 2019

The US’ telecommunications authority headed into 2019 with a full bench, after the Senate confirmed Geoffrey Starks to fill the remaining open seat of the five-member Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Starks was nominated for the post in June following the departure of former Commissioner Mignon Clyburn in April. He formerly served as assistant chief of the commission’s Enforcement Bureau, which investigates violations of the FCC’s rules and issues penalties. His term will run through June 2022.

In a statement, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said he looks forward to working with Starks, adding he was “excited to hear him highlight the need to expand rural broadband and the power of telemedicine” during a confirmation hearing.

The Senate also extended current Commissioner Brendan Carr’s tenure, approving him for a full five-year term running through June 2023. He was previously tapped to fill former FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s unexpired seat, but that term ended in June 2018.

The addition of Starks will bring a second Democrat to the commission, the other being Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. But it will not shift the balance of power from Republicans, who will maintain a majority with three members.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana joins Mobile World Live as its new US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana comes to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and...

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