Federal Communications Commission Consolidated Reporting Act of 2012

Floor Speech

By:  Steve Scalise
Date: May 30, 2012
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. SCALISE. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Mr. Speaker, we're bringing forward H.R. 3310, the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act. If you look throughout the many different requirements that the FCC has, and the number of reports--this is just a small stack of the reports that FCC has been required to bring to Congress just in the last 2 years. Many of these reports not only place tremendous burden on the industry groups that have to provide this data, but many times, because of the way that they're structured, by the time the report is issued, the data is outdated and really doesn't look at any broad spectrum issues. They're mostly specific to an industry and a specific area of an industry instead of looking at the entire marketplace.

So what we're doing with the FCC Consolidated Reporting Act is actually bringing forward a measure that reduces the size of government and actually reins in the heavy hand of government and takes eight different annual reports and consolidates them into one consolidated biannual report. And so you're taking eight reports that in many cases are outdated by the time they're released; and, in some cases the FCC, even though they're required to produce this data annually, because the reports are so burdensome on industry and on the FCC, they're not even able to produce these reports annually. In many cases, we've had reports that are due annually that haven't been submitted to us since 2009. So we're actually making a much more commonsense approach to this reporting system.

In addition to that, we're actually repealing some of the requirements that are still on the books--laws that Congress has passed over the last few decades that are not even required anymore by FCC or other agencies yet are still on the law books. And so we're cleaning up a lot of those.

One of those I'll give as an example is we're still requiring a competitiveness report to be produced with the wire-line telegraph industry. I don't know anybody since Samuel Morse invented that technology in the 1800s that is still using that technology on a broad scale. But surely Congress doesn't need to still have on the books a requirement that we have a report submitted by the FCC on competitiveness in the wire-line telegraph industry.

So this bill is a bipartisan approach to remove so many unnecessary requirements on our job creators who have to have compliance departments to comply with all these requests from the FCC; and, in many cases, they're getting these requests, and they know that when they submit this data the reports that they're submitting the data for aren't even going to be produced annually. And when those reports come out, they're going to be outdated, yet you still have to have massive compliance departments to go and gather all this information.

I think it makes much more sense for us to tell our job creators that, instead of having these massive compliance departments to do unnecessary work, that dollar would be much better spent going out and creating jobs and building out those wireless networks that people all across this country so desperately need.

Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

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