It is time, yet again, to announce what people can expect at the Commission's next open meeting. Before I do, I'd like to call attention to a number of recent actions that may not be on the November agenda, but certainly deserve highlighting. In recent weeks, the agency has been working to fulfill three important Congressional mandates. One would enhance national security by ensuring that untrustworthy communications equipment is not authorized for use within our border. Another would empower consumers to make more informed decisions about broadband service by requiring ISPs to display “nutrition” labels that disclose information about pricing and network performance. A third would improve transparency and accountability for the new Affordable Connectivity Program, which is helping more than 14 million households across the country get and stay online. Stay tuned because action on all three of these initiatives is forthcoming.
On top of all this work, we’ve lined up the following proposals for consideration at our November meeting.
- We're improving 911 reliability. We place an estimated 240 million emergency calls each year to the nation's more than 5,700 911 call centers. When 911 outages occur, action is needed to help the public maintain access to emergency responders. The Commission will consider rules to ensure that 911 call centers receive timely and useful notifications of network disruptions that affect 911 service, which will help them to inform the public when to use alternatives to call 911. The rules would also harmonize and maintain certain 911 reporting and certification requirements that will help improve 911 reliability.
- We’re fixing outdated media rules. The Commission’s rules specifically state that the Nielsen Station Index Directory shall be used to determine a television station’s local market for carriage purposes. The Nielsen Company recently phased out this report, replacing it with a monthly Local TV Station Information Report. As supported by the record, the Commission will vote to adopt this new Local TV Report as the publication for determining market areas.
- We will also consider an action from our Enforcement Bureau.