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August 18, 2017
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The nominees, who include the chairman and two commissioners, each highlighted broadband access as a priority in their applications.
Emily Tate is a staff reporter at Scoop News Group covering education and technology for EdScoop, StateScoop and FedScoop. She writes about the lat...
The open seats at the Federal Communications Commission are one step closer to being officially filled.
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation has announced that the nomination hearing for three FCC commissioners, including the chairman, will be held July 19.
If all nominees are confirmed, the FCC will return to full strength. Its five-member board would have a 3-2 Republican majority, equipping Republican Chairman Ajit Pai with enough support to begin deregulating the telecom industry and execute sweeping changes to issues like net neutrality or programs like E-rate that help deliver broadband access to rural and low-income districts across the country.
These issues came up in the initial questionnaires each nominee completed.
In it, the nominees — Pai, who was designated chairman by President Trump in January but still needs a rubber-stamp vote from the Senate; Republican Brendan Carr, who is currently general counsel of the agency; and Democrat Jessica Rosenworcel, who served as a commissioner at the FCC during the Obama administration — were asked to describe the top three challenges facing the FCC today.
Despite their political differences, all three nominees noted that delivering high-speed internet to all Americans should be a priority for the agency. Here’s what they wrote about the challenge of expanding broadband access in the questionnaires:
Ajit Pai, Chairman, Republican
Brendan Carr, Commissioner, Republican
Jessica Rosenworcel, Commissioner, Democrat
During the hearing, which is slated for 10 a.m. Wednesday, July 19, the nominees will likely be pressed further about their support of programs that directly affect school districts in the United States.
Be sure to check back in with EdScoop next week for a recap of what the nominees had to say about innovation and broadband access during the hearing.