Skip Navigation

Federal Communications Commission

English Display Options

Commission Document

WTB Seeks Comment on Sprint Nextel Petition to allow CDMA in ESMR Band

Download Options

Released: June 30, 2011


Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.


Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 11-1152

Released: June 30, 2011




WT Docket No. 11-110

Comment Date: August 1, 2011

Reply Comment Date: August 16, 2011

On June 3, 2011, Sprint Nextel Corporation (Sprint Nextel) submitted a Petition for Declaratory
Ruling (Petition) that the Commission’s rules permit larger than 25 kHz bandwidth operations in the 800
MHz Enhanced Specialized Mobile Radio Service (ESMR) bands (817 – 824 MHz/862 – 869 MHz).1 As
an alternative, Sprint Nextel requests the Petition be treated as a Petition for Rulemaking to revise Section
90.209 to the extent necessary to expressly authorize ESMR band Economic Area (EA) licensees to
deploy technologies using bandwidths greater than 25 kHz on their contiguous spectrum assignments.2
Sprint Nextel contends that there is an apparent incongruity between Section 90.209 of the Commission's
Rules, which restricts 800 MHz channels to a maximum bandwidth of 25 kHz, and the more narrowly-
focused provision in Subpart S of Part 90, Section 90.691 of the Commission's rules, which it believes to
allow wider bandwidth operations on contiguous channel EA licenses, so long as such operations conform
to the Commission's out-of-band emission requirements.3
Sprint Nextel holds geographically-licensed ESMR licenses with sufficient contiguous 800 MHz
channels to accommodate wideband technology options, such as 1.25 MHz CDMA equipment.4 It plans
to incorporate the 800 MHz ESMR spectrum into Sprint’s existing CDMA network which will result in
improved coverage, increase capacity, and increased broadband data speeds.5 However, Sprint Nextel
seeks clarification of the Commission’s rules or, in the alternative, a change of the rules, to ensure that the
25 kHz channel limitation in Section 90.209 does not apply to ESMR licenses with contiguous spectrum
sufficient to accommodate wideband technologies. Sprint Nextel states that such a clarification would
further Congressional intent under the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 (OBRA 93) by
creating regulatory parity among commercial licensees in the 800 MHz, Cellular, and PCS spectrum
allocations.6 Sprint Nextel contends that a review of recent Commission decisions for the 800 MHz band

1 See Request for Declaratory Ruling that the Commission's Rules Authorize Greater than 25 kHz Bandwidth
Operations in the 817-824/862-869 MHz Band, submitted to the Chief, Mobility Division, Wireless
Telecommunication Division, FCC, on filed June 3, 2011 (“Petition”).
2 Id. at 1 n.1.
3 47 CFR 90.209, 90.691.
4 See Petition at 3.
5 Id.
6 Id. at 4.

reveals that the Commission intended to allow wideband technologies in the ESMR bands, but Section
90.209 was never updated to reflect the changes in Subpart S of Part 90.7
We seek comment on all aspects of the Petition, as well as any other relevant issues such as
possible interference to adjacent services by allowing wideband technologies and any other rules that may
need to be changed if wideband technologies are permitted in the ESMR bands.

Procedural matters

Comments on the request are due no later than August 1, 2011. Reply comments are due no
later than August 16, 2011. All filings should reference the docket number of this proceeding WT 11-
This proceeding has been designated as a “permit-but-disclose” proceeding in accordance with the
Commission's ex parte rules.8 Parties making oral ex parte presentations in this proceeding are reminded
that memoranda summarizing the presentation must contain the presentation’s substance and not merely list
the subjects discussed.9 More than a one- or two-sentence description of the views and arguments presented
is generally required.10
The application and waiver request can be accessed electronically via the Commission’s Universal
Licensing System, The request, and comments and reply comments filed in
response to this Public Notice, will be available for public inspection and copying in the Commission's
Reference Center, Room CY-A257, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554, and via the
Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) by entering the docket number, WT 11-110.
Copies of the request are also available from Best Copy and Printing, Inc., telephone (800) 378-3160,
facsimile (301) 816-0169, e-mail
Comments may be filed using the Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) or by
filing paper copies. See Electronic Filing of Documents in Rulemaking Proceedings, 63 Fed. Reg. 24121
(1998). Comments filed through the ECFS can be sent as an electronic file via the Internet to http:// Generally, only one copy of an electronic submission must be filed. If multiple
docket or rulemaking numbers appear in the caption of this proceeding, however, commenters must transmit
one electronic copy of the comments to each docket or rulemaking number referenced in the caption. In
completing the transmittal screen, commenters should include their full name, U.S. Postal Service mailing
address, and the applicable docket or rulemaking number. Parties may also submit an electronic comment
by Internet e-mail. To get filing instructions for e-mail comments, commenters should send an e-mail to, and should include the following words in the body of the message, “get form.” A sample
form and directions will be sent in reply.
Parties who choose to file by paper must file an original and one copy of each filing. If more than
one docket or rulemaking number appears in the caption of this proceeding, commenters must submit two
additional copies for each additional docket or rulemaking number.

7 Petition at 4-5.
8 See 47 C.F.R. §§ 1.1200(a), 1.1206.
9 See Commission Emphasizes the Public’s Responsibilities in Permit-But-Disclose Proceedings, Public Notice, 15
FCC Rcd 19945 (2000).
10 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1206(b)(2). Other rules pertaining to oral and written presentations are also set forth in Section
1.1206(b). See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1206(b).

Filings can be sent by hand or messenger delivery, by commercial overnight courier, or by first-
class or overnight U.S. Postal Service mail (although we continue to experience delays in receiving U.S.
Postal Service mail). All filings must be addressed to the Commission’s Secretary, Office of the Secretary,
Federal Communications Commission, as follows:
-Effective December 28, 2009, all hand-delivered paper filings for the Commission’s Secretary
must be delivered to FCC Headquarters at 445 12th St., S.W., Room TW-A325, Washington, DC 20554. All
hand deliveries must be held together with rubber bands or fasteners. Envelopes must be disposed of before
entering the building. The filing hours at this location are 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.


This is


location where hand-delivered or messenger-delivered paper filings for the Commission’s
Secretary will be accepted. The Commission’s former filing location at 236 Massachusetts Ave., N.E., is
permanently closed.
-Commercial overnight mail (other than U.S. Postal Service Express Mail and Priority Mail) must
be sent to 9300 East Hampton Drive, Capitol Heights, MD 20743.
-U.S. Postal Service first-class mail, Express Mail, and Priority Mail should be addressed to 445
12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554.
-All filings must be addressed to the Commission's Secretary, Office of the Secretary, Federal
Communications Commission.
Parties shall send one copy of their comments and reply comments to Best Copy and Printing, Inc.,
Portals II, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room CY-B402, Washington, D.C. 20554, (800) 378-3160, e-mail
Comments filed in response to this Public Notice will be available for public inspection and
copying during business hours in the FCC Reference Information Center, Portals II, 445 12th Street S.W.,
Room CY-A257, Washington, D.C. 20554, and via the Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System
(ECFS) by entering the docket number, WT 11-110. The comments may also be purchased from Best Copy
and Printing, Inc., telephone (800) 378-3160, facsimile (301) 816-0169, e-mail
Alternate formats of this Public Notice (computer diskette, large print, audio recording, and
Braille) are available to persons with disabilities by contacting the Consumer & Governmental Affairs
Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (TTY), or send an e-mail to
For further information, contact Mr. Thomas Derenge of the Wireless Telecommunications
Bureau at (202) 418-2451 (voice), (202) 418-7233 (TTY), or via e-mail to
By the Deputy Chief, Mobility Division, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau.
- FCC -

Note: We are currently transitioning our documents into web compatible formats for easier reading. We have done our best to supply this content to you in a presentable form, but there may be some formatting issues while we improve the technology. The original version of the document is available as a PDF, Word Document, or as plain text.


You are leaving the FCC website

You are about to leave the FCC website and visit a third-party, non-governmental website that the FCC does not maintain or control. The FCC does not endorse any product or service, and is not responsible for, nor can it guarantee the validity or timeliness of the content on the page you are about to visit. Additionally, the privacy policies of this third-party page may differ from those of the FCC.