Congress to let Powell push FCC buttons

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Congress will let FCC Chairman Michael Powell take the lead in reforming his agency, an aide to House Commerce Committee Chairman Billy Tauzin said Thursday.

"We'll give him an opportunity to take a swing at the ball first," Ken Johnson, spokesman for Tauzin said during the Precursor Group's annual Washington conference. Powell has pledged to revamp the agency with a broad reorganization, but Tauzin and other Capitol Hill Republicans also want to strip the FCC of much of its merger review authority, hand some agency powers to state governments and possibly turn some duties such as record keeping to the private sector.

Powell hasn't discussed details of his plans and Wednesday would only say that he plans to offer his formal proposal to Congress "soon." - Bill McConnell

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