FCC January agenda breaks the mold


Usually, the Open Meeting of the FCC in January is nothing more than a look back at the previous year and a glance forward at the year ahead. But this time, the Commissioners are going to delve into actual issues. And it breaks the mold another way – they aren’t all related to the National Broadband Plan.

The Broadband Plan is on the agenda, make no mistake. When the meeting is held on Wednesday 1/20/10 its due date will be less than a month away. But there will be three other items to look into, including one – program access – that pits cable and other MVPD services.

From the FCC, here’s what’s going down at the January meeting:

* Program Access: A Report and Order to further promote competition in the video distribution market through rules addressing terrestrially delivered, cable-affiliated programming.

* Wireless Devices: An Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to complete an important component of the DTV transition by prohibiting the further distribution and sale of devices that operate in the 700 MHz frequency and setting a date by which existing devices must clear the band to enable the rollout of public safety services and the deployment of next generation wireless devices for consumers.

* Robocalls: A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would harmonize the Commission’s rules regarding prerecorded telemarketing calls with the Federal Trade Commission’s recently amended Telemarketing Sales Rule.

* National Broadband Plan Status Report: Commission staff will report on the status of the National Broadband Plan, providing a framework for the national purposes portion of the Plan.