Dingell: No Premature Broadband Plan Rulemakings, Please

Rep. asks FCC to consult with Congress on blueprint
Publish date:

Rep. John Dingell (D-Mich.) has asked the FCC not to adopt any "premature" rulemakings on the National Broadband Plan without consulting Congress first, according to a copy of his speech at a National Association of Broadcasters State Leadership Conference dinner Tuesday night (March 2) in Washington.

Dingell, former chairman of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, one of the committees with oversight over the commission, said he was "anxious" about the process of adopting the plan, which is due to Congress March 17. It is widely expected to be a blueprint for action, followed by rulemakings to implement some of the proposed policies.

"While the plan is essential to improving the nation's broadband infrastructure and access to it," said the congressman, "I believe its implementation must proceed as a collaborative effort between the Congress and the Commission."

"Premature rulemaking action by the Commission to implement the National Broadband Plan's recommendations very well may be counterproductive to the goals I have just outlined, and as such, I have sent a letter to Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski urging him to coordinate with the Congress in implementing the plan," he said.

The plan is due to Congress March 17 after the FCC told legislators it would have to delay the Feb. 17 deadline to provide ample time to vet it with the full commission. The plan will get a public unveiling at the FCC's March 16 public meeting, and some of its working recommendation have already been previewed in various venues.