Genachowski: Sequestration Will Harm Public Safety, Spectrum Management
Tells Senators FCC's mission will be compromised by cuts
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 3/12/2013 10:17:45 AM
That is according to a copy of his prepared testimony for the Senate Commerce Committee FCC oversight hearing on Tuesday.
"I have serious concerns because the ongoing sequestration cuts will harm the ability of the FCC to deliver on its vital mission, including universal service, public safety, spectrum management, and consumer protection," he said, echoing comments from FCC officials on the eve of the sequestration last month.
The total FCC budget is $341,923,845. Sequestration would cut about $17 million, and would need to be realized in seven months. Auction-related expenses are exempt from the sequester, however.
Genachowski's testimony touches on a number of issues near and dear to committee chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) including cybersecurity, emergency communications and getting broadband to schools and libraries -- Rockefeller was instrumental in creating the e-rate subsidy for wiring the nation's schools, while Genachowski was instrumental in implementing it in an earlier tour at the FCC.
"We need to continue to drive increasing broadband speed and capacity," he said, "including to our schools, libraries, and other anchor institutions. That's why earlier this year I issued the Gigabit Cities Challenge, which calls for at least one innovation hub with ultra-high-speed broadband in every state by 2015, and why the Commission is working with municipalities and broadband providers to meet this challenge."
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