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Public Statements

Federal Communications Commission Process Reform Act of 2012

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. TERRY. I thank the chairman.

Mr. Chairman, may I submit that my friend, who just spoke on the other side, maybe was a victim of some poor staff work that took some liberties to revise and extend the real bill that we are debating here today because, frankly, the reforms here are fairly practical and necessary.

What this really does is puts into the process of developing rules some simple changes that we think are reasonably necessary, keeping in mind that transparency is the key. So, for example, let's take the recent USF reform rule that came out. I have been active in USF, Mr. Chairman, for several years trying to get some of these reforms done through Congress. It was taken up through the FCC process. I was anxious to see the proposed rule and was very disappointed when it was basically a rough outline of what turned out to be then passed. Then several days later, or weeks later, the full order came out, 750 pages.

Now, don't you think that if you are going to vote on a proposed rule that you would know what the rule says before you vote on it? It seems rather simple, and I would expect that people that are watching this debate would think that a bureaucracy issuing a proposed rule, that there would actually be a transcript of the rule. So we're just asking for simple things like that.

And last, during this proposed rule, there's a time for comment. And at the end of the comment period this last time--and this is why a shot clock is really necessary--the FCC then dumped volumes of documents that it said it was going to use as evidence in this process, giving people 48 hours.

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Mr. TERRY. The only ones that are least disadvantaged by that are the biggest entities that have a houseful of lawyers that could go over it and read it. Rural Nebraska doesn't have the opportunity to do that and reply. So giving them sufficient time to review that just makes common sense.

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