The Federal Scene 

Keeping up with Congress, federal agencies and more

This page keeps you abreast of D.C. telecom-related actions, whether they come from the executive, legislative or judicial branch.

Latest updates

01.08.20 - The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation announced it will hold a hearing on January 15, 2020, entitled “Industries of the Future,” which will examine how the United States can maintain its global economic edge in artificial intelligence, advanced manufacturing, quantum information science, biotechnology and developing the next generation of wireless networks and infrastructure. Commissioners O’Rielly and Rosenworcel are scheduled to testify.

01.08.20 - President Trump announced his intent to nominate John Chase Johnson to be the inspector general at the FCC.

12.30.19 - President Trump signed the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act into law. The bill requires carriers to offer call-authentication technology to everyone at no additional charge and gives the FCC the ability to step up enforcement actions against unlawful robocalls with a longer statute of limitations and increased fines in certain cases, among other things.

12.19.19 - The Senate passed S. 1822, the Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Available Act on December 19, 2019. The bill will require creation of a new national broadband map and among other things, requires the Commission to collect granular service availability data from wired, fixed wireless and satellite broadband providers. | press release

12.16.19 - The House of Representatives passed H.R. 4229, the Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Availability Act, which requires the FCC to change the way broadband data is collected, verified and reported. The House also passed H.R. 4227, the Mapping Accuracy Promotes Services Act, which prohibits the submission to the FCC of broadband internet access service coverage information or data for the purposes of compiling an inaccurate broadband coverage map. | press release

12.05.19 - The House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology of the Committee on Energy and Commerce held an FCC oversight hearing with Chairman Pai and Commissioners Carr, O’Rielly, Rosenworcel and Starks appearing as witnesses. | press release

11.18.19 – The House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-N.J.) and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-Penn.) announced the Communications and Technology Subcommittee will hold an FCC oversight hearing on December 5, 2019. |  press release

11.15.19 - Members from the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, and the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology announced they have agreed in principle on legislation, entitled the TRACED Act, to combat robocalls. |  press release

11.14.19 - The House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology of the Committee on Energy and Commerce met to markup nine bills on broadband, 5G and spectrum. All nine bill were favorably forwarded to the full committee. |  press release

News clips

12.31.19Trump signs law to cut down on robocalls (The Hill)
12.19.19Robocall deal sails through Senate to Trump's desk (Politico)
12.16.19New study finds surge in robocalls as Congress weighs legislation (The Hill)
12.16.19Second top White House telecom adviser resigns in less than a year (The Hill)
12.04.19House passes anti-robocall bill (The Hill)
11.27.19Lawmakers tee up vote on compromise bill targeting robocalls (The Hill)
11.20.19House committee advances legislation to improve broadband mapping (The Hill)
11.15.19 House, Senate announce agreement on anti-robocall bill (The Hill)
11.08.19 Senators introduce bill to create 'parity' among broadband programs (The Hill)