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Chairman Response Regarding Incentive Auctions

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Released: July 1, 2014
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FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS

COMMISSION

WASHINGTON

OFFICE OF

June 11, 2014

THE CHA IR MAN

The Honorable Mike Mcintyre

U.S. House of Representatives

2428 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Representative Mcintyre:

Thank you for sharing your views on the importance of the Broadcast Television

Incentive Auction. The Incentive Auction is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to expand the

benefits of mobile wireless coverage and competition to consumers across the Nation-

particularly consumers in rural areas -

offering more choices of wireless providers, lower prices,

and higher quality mobile services.

A priority of the auction will be to ensure that nationwide providers that already possess

significant amounts of low-band spectrum are not able to use the auction to keep competitors

from accessing the spectrum they need to provide additional choices to consumers. This is

vitally important to rural communities, where such spectrum is necessary for competitors to

provide improved service to areas that currently have poor or no wireless coverage.

Additionally, the new 600 MHz Band will be licensed using Partial Economic Areas

(PEAs), which will promote entry into the market by a broad range of wireless service providers.

PEAs are smaller than Economic Areas (EAs), and divide urban and rural areas into separate

service areas. Licensing the 600 MHz Band in this way will encourage entry by wireless

providers that contemplate offering wireless service on a localized basis. PEAs are small enough

to allow bidders to acquire spectrum over a limited coverage area-often only a few counties-

which should enable small businesses and rural providers to compete with larger wireless

providers in these areas.

Designed with the goal of preserving and promoting competition, the Incentive Auction

can deliver to consumers- regardless of their zip code- greater choices, improved services, and

lower costs.

Thank you again for apprising me of your views on this important matter. I look forward

to working with you toward our mutual goal of a successful auction for the benefit of America's

consumers in rural areas and the entire nation.

Tom Wheeler

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