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Gov. Agency Spectrum Incentive Auction Approved

House bill would pass some sale revenue back to agencies, but not fund reconstruction

This article originally appeared in TV Technology.

U.S. government agencies and the Department of Defense have a large amount of spectrum below 6 GHz and Congress is looking at reallocating some of it for wireless broadband or unlicensed services. Last week the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee approved a plan that calls for government spectrum users to give up some of this real estate through auctions.

The plan is contained in the H.R. 3674 bill, the Federal Spectrum Incentive Act, which was authored by Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.) and Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) and creates a path for relinquishing spectrum through incentive auctions. In this plan, government entities giving up spectrum would receive a portion of net auction revenues instead of relocation costs.

Guthrie said, “I appreciate the committee’s swift action on this bill. H.R. 3674 is essential to encourage additional spectrum, a vital component for the advancement of American innovation, to be made available for commercial use. It is encouraging to see a focus placed on this legislation and the underlying spectrum shortage.”

For additional information, see H.R. 3674, the Federal Spectrum Incentive Act and the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee Web page.