FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Announces Additional Process Reform Measures


2/8/2017 8:49:00 PM

Starting in March, the FCC will release a fact sheet to summarize proposals at meetings and will now require significant changes to items slated for a vote to be made by a commissioner, rather than staff.

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Following a pilot program announced this month to improve transparency of rulemakings by the Federal Communications Commission and at its open meetings, Chairman Ajit Pai announced the implementation of  two additional process reform measures on Tuesday. One measure was proposed by Commissioner Mignon Clyburn and the other from Commissioner Michael O’Rielly.

O’Rielly “proposed that any substantive edits made to an item between the time it is circulated and the meeting at which we vote on it should have to be proposed by a commissioner, rather than staff. This reform will help promote accountability and allow commissioners to better understand where edits are coming from.”

Pai said the reform will be in effect immediately.

Clyburn’s recommendation includes releasing a one-page fact sheet to summarize proposals in question at its open meetings, in addition to the complete text of items up for discussion. The fact sheet could make items accessible to more consumers, according to Clyburn. The fact sheets will be released with materials for the March meeting.

These new changes follow Pai’s announcement of a new pilot program that focuses on releasing some documents for discussion at the FCC’s open meetings to the public as well as commissioners approximately three weeks before the meeting date, ACA International previously reported.  As part of the pilot program, some documents slated for discussion at the FCC’s monthly open meeting will be made available to the public at the same time as commissioners. The new measures under the pilot program are in effect for the February open meeting.

“With these changes and others that have been announced in the last few days, we are off to a strong start on the issue of process reform. But there is still much more to do. I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues on improving the Commission’s operations,” Pai said.

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