- The rest of the industry may be getting back to work post New Year
- But the FCC and its employees are looking at an enforced holiday extension
The FCC says it’s set to suspend itself tomorrow (Thursday) if no solution to the partial government shutdown threatened by the standoff between the president and US congress (over the ‘wall’) is found.
It says most of its operations will be suspended in the middle of the day giving employees up to four hours to complete an orderly shutdown of their operations. Critical services, where life and property are involved are to continue and so too the preparations for spectrum auctions (which pay for themselves) and involve around 200 employees.
Most employees will get sent home, 20 per cent get to show up and keep working.
Will it matter?
It will to the employees who don’t get paid, but one wonders whether chairman Pai will be that put out.
The shutdown means that things like consumer complaints (there are a lot of those) and phone inquiries can’t be answered. And, according to The Verge, “consumer protection and local competition enforcement must cease.” Not something that Pai is going to lose too much sleep over, judging by his actions to now.
The shutdown will also affect equipment authorisations, though presumably only if the shutdown continues for weeks and months rather than days.
The FCC’s overall shutdown plan is available here. The resumption of normal Commission operations will also be announced on the FCC’s website.
FCC to suspend most operations mid-day Thursday if funding still lapsed
WASHINGTON, December 31, 2018—In the event of a continued partial lapse in federal government funding, the Federal Communications Commission will suspend most operations in the middle of the day on Thursday, January 3. At that time, employees will have up to four hours to complete an orderly shutdown of operations.
However, work required for the protection of life and property will continue, as will any work related to spectrum auctions, which is funded by auction proceeds. In addition, the Office of the Inspector General will continue operations until further notice.
The Commission on Wednesday will release a Public Notice detailing the effects the suspension of operations will have, including on electronic filing and database systems, filing deadlines, regulatory and application fee payments, transaction shot clocks, and more. The Public Notice will be available on the Commission’s website, www.fcc.gov.
The FCC’s overall shutdown plan is available at https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-plan-orderly-shutdown-december-2018. The resumption of normal Commission operations will also be announced on the FCC’s website.
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