A pair of senators have proposed a bill to correct what they
suggest are technical deficiencies at the FCC.
Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va..) and Olympia Snowe (R-Me.)
Thursday introduced a bill to boost the FCC's technical prowess. The bill would
allow commissioners to appoint technical advisers and require the National
Academy of Sciences to study the FCC's technical policy and policymaking
decisions and the personnel available to inform those decisions.
"At a time when citizens are demanding more effective and
efficient government, this legislation will ensure the FCC is sufficiently
equipped, both legally and technically, to craft sound policy," said Snowe.
The FCC Technical Expertise Capacity Heightening (FCC TECH)
Act would allow commissioners to appoint an electrical engineer or
computer specialist to consult on technical issues.
In a joint release outlining the bill, the senators suggest
it is needed to combat an ongoing problem, or what they called the "glaring
technical deficiencies at the FCC, which left unaddressed could continue to
hamper American innovation and competitiveness."
An FCC spokesperson was unavailable for comment at press
time, but FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has also made raising the FCC's
"techspertise," as it were, a priority given tech-heavy issues like
spectrum that are teed up for major action.