Sen. Dean Heller Introduces FCC Reform Bill
February 11, 2015 at 3:54 AM (PT)
Sen. DEAN HELLER (R-NV) has introduced the latest Senate version of the Federal Communications Commission Process Reform Act, which would publish proposed rules or changes 21 days in advance of a vote, allow any Commissioner to ask for a vote on any order issued by a bureau, require procedures to be established for handling extensive new data submitted towards the end of a comment period, increasing the openness of review periods, and loosen the Sunshine Act application for when a bipartisan majority of Commissioners meet to discuss matters.
The bill also requires the FCC to "identify a market failure, consumer harm, or regulatory barrier to investment before adopting economically significant rules" and show that the proposed regulation's benefits outweigh its costs "while taking into account the need for regulation to impose the least burden on society."
HELLER said, “As the influence of the FCC continues to grow with innovation, it is imperative its actions not be clouded in opaqueness or secrecy. Consumers ultimately suffer the most when this occurs, and I do not believe that was the intent when legislators created the FCC over 80 years ago. The FCC will continue to play a large role in the daily lives of NEVADA’s citizens and all Americans. As it continues to work on complex policies affecting our entire nation, I believe consumers deserve more transparency in the FCC rulemaking process.
“In amending the rules, the public will know exactly what the FCC is voting on well before the vote. Right now, we don’t even know what major decision like the FCC’s net neutrality order says. How is that an example of solid rulemaking? The transparency in this legislation delivers a better product for consumers as they will know for certain the cost of regulations to economic growth and whether new rulings are justified based on current problems facing the market. These are principles that all consumers deserve.”