Senate confirms Rosenworcel to new term on FCC US

FILE PHOTO: FCC commissioners testify before US Congress in Washington
FILE PHOTO: Jessica Rosenworcel testifies during an oversight hearing held by the US Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee to examine the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in Washington, U.S. May 24 June 2020. Alex Wong / Pool via REUTERS / File Photo

December 7, 2021

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate voted 68-31 on Tuesday to confirm Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel to a new five-year term with the telecoms regulator.

Rosenworcel, 50, a champion of broadband access for low-income American households and landmark net neutrality rules, was appointed by President Joe Biden in October was the first woman to serve as the permanent chairman of the FCC.

“There is much work to be done to ensure modern communications reach everyone, everywhere. Now let’s get it started,” Rosenworcel said on Twitter after the Senate vote.

Biden waited more than nine months to deliver the FCC nomination. The committee was unable to resolve a number of issues because it had a vacancy and was split 2-2 between Democrats and Republicans.

The Senate Commerce Committee could vote on Biden’s nomination of Democrat Gigi Sohn to the open seat as early as December 15.

Sohn, a former senior aide to Tom Wheeler who served as chairman of the FCC under former President Barack Obama, said it would take at least a year for the commission to restore the neutrality rules that were repealed in 2017. under President Donald Trump.

The FCC passed net neutrality rules in 2015, prohibiting internet service providers from blocking or throttling traffic or providing paid fast lanes.

“I am very concerned that broadband, an essential service, has not had any oversight over the past four years,” Sohn said at a hearing this month.

Sohn said she is not in favor of using net neutrality rules to regulate internet prices.

Rosenworcel said in written comments that she has no plans to adjust broadband rates directly or indirectly.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Cynthia Osterman) Senate confirms Rosenworcel to new term on FCC US

Bobby Allyn

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