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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) staff today extended by three weeks the so-called "shot clock" of 180 days to review the spectrum sales and joint marketing agreements between Verizon and major cable companies. The FCC order is here.
The following is attributed to Harold Feld, legal director of Public Knowledge:
"We are pleased that the FCC staff extended their self-imposed, voluntary deadline to evaluate the transactions and joint marketing agreements between Verizon and major cable companies.
"We expect the Commission to take whatever time it needs for all interested parties to conduct a complete and thorough review of the voluminous documents submitted and for the Commission to consider carefully in their deliberations the arguments of the transaction opponents. More than 50,000 documents have already been filed and if those raise new questions or issues, we expect the Commission staff to extend again the time for their review.
"At the end of the day, protecting the public interest in a transaction that could well reshape the communications industry in this country is more important than meeting an arbitrary deadline for reviewing a transaction. The Commission should not cut corners for the sake of expedience if the public interest will be sacrificed and consumers across the country will be harmed."