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.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back