Industry representatives Thursday were cautiously supportive
of Republican efforts to reform FCC processes.
In advance of Thursday's hearing in the House Communications
Subcommittee on draft FCC reform bills, broadcast, cable and phone association
execs expressed varying degrees of support, though all indicated general
agreement that some form of FCC reform was needed.
"NAB continues to support efforts by Chairmen Upton and
Walden to take a fresh look at FCC processes to ensure that Commission
procedures don't impede the ability to serve the public interest," said
National Association of Broadcasters president Gordon Smith. "The agency
has a critically important mission, and it is imperative that it execute that
mission expeditiously, fairly and in a data-driven manner. We look forward to
working with the Committee and the Commission to ensure that the FCC functions
at the highest level for the American people."
NCTA president Michael Powell, a former FCC chairman who
himself has called for reforming how the FCC regulates, similarly steered clear
of specifically endorsing the bill's proposals, but applauded the effort to
improve the process.
"We thank Chairman Walden and members of the committee
for their continued interest in improving FCC procedures and processes,"
Powell said. "Given today's competitive communications landscape, it is
appropriate that policymakers carefully consider new ideas that promote
transparency and predictability in decision making, streamline reporting
requirements and remove outdated regulatory obstacles."
USTelecom president Walter McCormick Jr. came the closest to
endorsing the bills themselves.
"We appreciate the continued efforts of Chairmen
Upton and Walden to improve the FCC's transparency, efficiency, and
accountability," he said. "The legislation being discussed at today's
hearing will provide for streamlined regulatory processes and increased
regulatory certainty, complementing reforms undertaken by President Obama and
former Chairman Genachowski. We hope that today's hearing will lead to an even
fuller examination in the months ahead of the need to update our nation's communications
laws, and we look forward to working with the committee to achieve broad
bipartisan consensus on further measures to address the emerging needs of our
21st century economy."