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House OKs FCC Reform

Measure consolidates required reports. Measure now goes to the Senate.

By a 415-0 vote, the House has passed the first of two FCC reform bills.

The FCC Consolidated Reporting Act is sponsored by Louisiana Democrat Rep. Steve Scalise, Oregon Republican and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden and California Democrat and Ranking Member Rep. Anna Eshoo. The measure consolidates what are now eight separate reports required by Congress on the industries regulated by the commission into one biennial report. H.R. 2844 also eliminates four outdated reports, including one on the status of competition in the telegraph industry that dates back to 1934.

FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai calls the FCC’s reporting requirements “numerous, outdated and burdensome.”

A single report, he says, would actually have newer, more useful data. He urged the Senate to quickly act on the measure.

Meanwhile, lawmakers are still working on another FCC reform bill which would, among other things, establish more shot clocks for proceedings along with requiring the agency to publish the full text of a rule for public comment before a commission vote.