FCC's O'Rielly Criticizes Commission On 'Editorial Privileges' Revisions After Vote
March 10, 2015 at 3:45 AM (PT)
FCC Commissioner MIKE O'RIELLY highlighted problems he sees in the Commission's procedures in a piece on his FCC.GOV blog MONDAY (3/9), pointing to "the flawed procedure for finalizing and releasing Commission documents after they are voted on by the Commission at an Open Meeting," particularly in the recent Net neutrality proceeding.
"FCC processes are counterintuitive and unnecessarily opaque," O'RIELLY charged, reiterating his opposition to allowing "editorial privileges" to alter bills after they are passed. O'RIELLY registered his objection to granting editorial privileges to the Net neutrality rules at the time they were approved.
The post explains the process of "editorial privileges," with O'RIELLY noting that he does not believe that "substantive changes should be made under the guise of 'editorial privileges,' especially since such a process is make-believe. It should be the Commissioners who propose substantive changes, not the staff. By objecting to editorial privileges, this is essentially what I was asking for: that the Commissioners put their names to further revisions instead of hiding behind staff edits and signing off on them after the fact during the release process." He added that substantive changes in response to issues raised by dissenting Commissioners should not be necessary since his dissent includes points he had already made before in blog posts and shared with the Bureaus and Offices, and complained that if an item is not complete before a vote is ordered, the vote should be delayed ("There is no justification for asking Commissioners to vote on an unfinished product when FCC leadership sets its own agenda").
O'REILLY concludes his post with a call for greater transparency, saying, "We should take time now to consider, adopt, and post official rules of procedure. They should be codified in the Code of Federal Regulations for the public to see. And we should update them as necessary and post them again with each new Chairmanship."