FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski took to the Hill Wednesday to outline the FCC's 2012 budget of $354,181,000, all of it raised through fees and auction proceeds, while suggesting his was a relatively small agency with a big job.
According to a copy of his testimony for House Appropriations oversight hearing, he said that budget is a "fiscally responsible" effort to maintain necessary programs while continuing to find efficiencies. That included saving $2 million in IT, administration, and other areas.
He suggested that, as it was last year, 2012 would see continued emphasis on broadband as the communications technology driving innovation in everything from education and health care to public safety. "The importance of these efforts to promote opportunity and prosperity through communications technology grows every day."
He pointed out that the FCC, over the past 20 years, has raised over $50 billion through spectrum auctions, and that while the industry has grown in size and complexity, the FCC is at a 10-year low in full-time employee levels.
He talks several times about the FCC's limited resources, and what it has been able to do in spite of them, including
Universal Service reforms, completing a baseline spectrum inventory, and launching a "comprehensive review" of current
Among the 2012 requests are $400,000 for measuring wireless network broadband speeds, $1 million for a study of broadband usage and adoption per a Congressional mandate, $1.7 million to maintain the National Broadband Map Web site; and $1 million for a media ownership diversity (new entrant) study.