FCC Limits Discounts to Small Carriers
Apr 26, 2006, 11:28 AM by (staff)
The Federal Communications Commission today decided to limit small carrier discounts on future auctions. Currently large carriers partner with small regional carriers to bid on spectrum because the small carriers are eligible for a 25% discount on the bidding price. This 25% discount was implemented so that small carriers could compete for spectrum against much wealthier national carriers. The new rules will prevent large carriers from receiving the small carrier discount by forcing small carriers to pay full price if they lease or resell 50% or more of the spectrum they win. Additionally, the FCC said it would scrutinize whether a small carrier that leases or resells more than 25% of their winnings is still eligible for the discount.
FCC Weighing Changes to Auction Discount Rules
The FCC plans to alter how companies qualify for discounts in spectrum auctions. The rules came under fire recently after Dish Networks won $13 billion in spectrum by bidding through smaller entities.
Dish's Designated Entities Under Attack
More organizations are piling on the designated entities that Dish Networks used to bid in this year's AWS-3 spectrum auction. Rather than bid directly, Dish had three small companies, in which it has an 85% stake, bid on its behalf.
FCC to Fix Auction Bidding Rules for Designated Entities
The FCC is moving forward with plans to alter how companies use designated entities in spectrum auctions and qualify for discounts. The existing rules have been under fire since the close of the AWS-3 spectrum auction wherein Dish Networks won $13 billion in spectrum by bidding through smaller entities.
AT&T Proposes Caps for Designated Entities
AT&T and a handful of other carriers today asked the FCC to consider a new way to define designated entities and small businesses in spectrum auctions moving forward. The proposal follows Dish Networks' use of designated entities — or small companies — to bid for spectrum in the AWS-3 auction on its behalf.
FCC Keeps Auction Reserve at 30 MHz
The FCC today finalized its proposed rules for next year's 600 MHz spectrum auction and kept the reserve for smaller carriers at 30 MHz. T-Mobile and others petitioned the FCC to raise the reserve to 40 MHz, but FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler believes the 30 MHz cap offers plenty of opportunity for those who may bid.
A Sign of hope.
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