Subcommittee Advances Proposals to Improve Transparency, Efficiency, and Accountability at the FCC

July 25, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC – The Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, chaired by Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), today advanced two legislative proposals to improve transparency, efficiency, and accountability at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC Process Reform Act, sponsored by Chairman Walden and Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), and the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act, sponsored by Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), are both similar to legislation approved with bipartisan support last Congress. The measures are part of the ongoing effort to streamline obligations of the FCC and improve decision making while reducing regulatory burdens facing job creators.

Prior to the subcommittee’s markup, Chairman Walden and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Ranking Member Anna Eshoo (D-CA), along with full committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) and Ranking Member Henry A. Waxman (D-CA), agreed to advance the FCC Process Reform Act out of subcommittee and continue working to find a bipartisan legislative solution before the bill is marked up at full committee.

“Reforming FCC process is an issue that this subcommittee is no stranger to. Over the past two and a half years, we’ve held multiple hearings, marked up a bill last Congress, and passed a bill on the floor of the House. It is well established where my colleagues in the minority and I disagree on the specific language of this bill. However, we do agree that all government agencies should have a transparent, predictable, and consistent process that ensures the agency is productive in carrying out its responsibilities,” said Walden. "Make no mistake, I stand behind the language in this bill. I believe that it would produce a more productive and predictable FCC that could serve as a model for administrative agencies throughout the federal government. But despite our differences, I am not ready to throw in the towel on a bipartisan approach.”

“As the regulator of an industry driving economic growth in this country, the FCC should operate in an open, transparent, and fair manner to encourage further job creation, investment, and innovation,” said Upton. “These proposals get to the heart of President Obama’s recent call for a ‘smarter, more innovative, and more accountable government.’ They are about good government and ensuring regulatory agencies work to promote economic growth. I applaud Chairman Walden’s rigorous efforts to find common ground to advance the FCC Process Reform Act in a bipartisan manner and look forward to the full committee’s consideration of this important bill.”

The subcommittee also advanced the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act, which will reduce the burden on the FCC to produce multiple reports and instead produce one comprehensive and informative review of the marketplace.

Both the FCC Process Reform Act and the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act were adopted by voice vote.

###