Ajit Pai

FCC Won't Extend Comment Deadline on Broadband Boosters

Cities wanted more time to weigh in on potential FCC preemption

The FCC has denied a request by cities and counties and their regulatory officers to extend the reply comment deadlines on two proceedings that could result in preemption of state and local broadband deployment-related regs and provisions. 

FCC chairman Ajit Pai has launched two inquiries, one on how to remove barriers to wireless broadband deployment, the other on speeding wireless deployment, with comments due July 17.

The U.S. Conference of Mayors, Government Finance Officers Association, National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (NATOA) and others had asked for an extension to Aug. 15, but the FCC said they had not made their case that the item was sufficiently complex and the number of initial comments sufficiently large to justify the extension.

The petitioners also said they needed time to let local governments know they were being "maligned" in initial comments and reply.

"Although local governments’ explanations regarding their practices are an important part of the record, we are not persuaded that they need more time to learn of and respond to such claims than to any other comments," said the FCC. "If additional information regarding such matters comes to light after the reply comments are due, parties may provide it through ex parte filings in the relevant docket."