[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 199 (Monday, October 15, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 62461-62463]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-25235]


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FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

47 CFR Parts 0, 27, and 90

[PS Docket 12-94; PS Docket No. 06-229; WT Docket 06-150; DA 12-1462]


Implementing Public Safety Broadband Provisions of the Middle 
Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012

AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: In this document, the Public Safety and Homeland Security 
Bureau (Bureau) of the Commission implemented certain provisions of the 
Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 (Public Safety 
Spectrum Act) governing deployment of a nationwide public safety 
broadband network in the 700 MHz band. Pursuant to clear statutory 
directives, the Bureau reallocated the D Block (758-763/788-793 MHz) 
for ``public safety services'' and delete Commission rules that are 
plainly inconsistent with this revised allocation; deleted the rules 
establishing, providing license authority with respect to, and 
governing operations under the Public Safety Broadband License in the 
existing public safety broadband spectrum; and adopted rules 
implementing the clear mandate of the Public Safety Spectrum Act to 
grant a license with respect to the public safety broadband spectrum 
(763-768/793-798 MHz), guard band (768-769/798-799 MHz), and the D 
Block to the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet). By 
eliminating any confusion or uncertainty about the new regulatory 
framework applicable to the public safety broadband network, these 
action takes further steps necessary to facilitate the transition of 
this spectrum to FirstNet as required by the Act.

DATES: Effective November 14, 2012, except for the removal of 
Sec. Sec.  90.18 and 90.528 of the Commission's rules. The Commission 
will publish a separate document in the Federal Register announcing the 
subsequent effective date of these removals.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gene Fullano, Federal Communications 
Commission, Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, 445 12th Street 
SW., Room 7-C747, Washington, DC 20554. Telephone: (202)-418-0492, 
email: genaro.fullano@fcc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In the Report and Order, DA 12-1462, adopted 
and released September 7, 2012, the Bureau implements certain 
provisions of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 
(``Public Safety Spectrum Act'' or ``Act'') \1\ governing deployment of 
a nationwide public safety broadband network in the 700 MHz band. The 
Public Safety Spectrum Act establishes the First Responder Network 
Authority (FirstNet) to oversee the construction and operation of this 
network as licensee of both the ``existing public safety broadband 
spectrum'' (763-769/793-799 MHz) and the spectrally adjacent ``700 MHz 
D Block spectrum'' (758-763/788-793 MHz).\2\ The Act directs the 
Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) to reallocate the 
D Block for public safety services,\3\ to license the D Block and the 
existing public safety broadband spectrum to FirstNet \4\ and to take 
other actions necessary to ``facilitate the transition'' of the 
existing public safety broadband spectrum to FirstNet.
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    \1\ See Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, 
Pub. L. No. 112-96, 126 Stat. 156 (2012).
    \2\ See id. Secs. 6201(a), 6202 and 6204(a); see also id. sec. 
6001(2) (defining ``700 MHz D Block spectrum'') and (14) (defining 
``existing public safety broadband spectrum'').
    \3\ See id. sec. 6101.
    \4\ See id. sec. 6201(a).
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    In the Report and Order, the Bureau implements clear directives of 
Congress set forth in the Public Safety Spectrum Act. The Bureau 
reallocates the D Block for ``public safety services'' and deletes 
Commission rules that are plainly inconsistent with this revised 
allocation. It also deletes the Commission rules establishing, 
providing license authority with respect to, and governing operations 
under the Public Safety Broadband License in the existing public safety 
broadband spectrum. The Bureau replaces these with rules implementing 
the clear mandate of the Public Safety Spectrum Act to grant a license 
with respect to this spectrum and the D Block to FirstNet. The rule 
changes adopted by the Bureau in this order are strictly limited to 
implementation of aspects of that mandate that leave no room for agency 
discretion, and thus fall within the Bureau's delegated authority and 
are consistent with the requirements of the Administrative Procedure 
Act.\5\ As noted below, by eliminating any confusion or uncertainty 
about the new regulatory framework applicable to the public safety 
broadband network, the Bureau's action takes further steps necessary to 
facilitate the transition of this spectrum to FirstNet as the 
prospective licensee established by the Act;. The Report and Order is 
available at http://transition.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2012/db0907/DA-12-1462A1.pdf.
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    \5\ See id.; 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B).
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    This Report and Order will become effective November 14, 2012, 
except for the deletion of sections 90.18 and 90.528 of the 
Commission's rules. Following that date, the Commission will publish a 
separate notice in the Federal Register announcing the subsequent 
effective date of these rule deletions, which shall be the date of 
issuance of a license to the First Responder Network Authority pursuant 
to Section 6201(a) of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act 
of 2012.
    Under Section 603(a) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), the 
Commission is not required to prepare a final regulatory flexibility 
analysis relating to the Report and Order because it was not required 
to publish general notice of proposed rulemaking before effecting the 
rule changes set forth

[[Page 62462]]

therein. The Report and Order contains no new or modified information 
collection requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 
(PRA), Public Law 104-13. The Commission shall send a copy of the 
Report and Order in a report to be sent to Congress and the Government 
Accountability Office pursuant to the Congressional Review Act, see 5 
U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A).

List of Subjects

47 CFR Part 0

    Classified information, Freedom of information, Government 
publications, Infants and children, Organization and functions 
(Government agencies), Privacy, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Sunshine Act.

47 CFR Part 27

    Communications common carriers, Radio.

47 CFR Part 90

    Administrative practice and procedure, Business and industry, Civil 
defense, Common carriers, Communications equipment, Emergency medical 
services, Incorporation by reference, Individuals with disabilities, 
Radio, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Federal Communications Commission.
Timothy A. Peterson,
Chief of Staff, Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, The Federal 
Communications Commission amends 47 CFR parts 0, 27, and 90 as follows:

PART 0--COMMISSION ORGANIZATION

0
1. The authority citation for part 0 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  Secs. 5, 48 Stat. 1068, as amended; 47 U.S.C. 155.


Sec.  0.181  [Amended]

0
2. Section 0.181 is amended by removing paragraph (k).

PART 27--MISCELLANEOUS WIRELESS COMMUNICATIONS SERVICES

0
3. The authority citation for part 27 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  47 U.S.C. 154, 301, 302, 303, 307, 309, 332, 336, 
and 337 unless otherwise noted.


0
4. Section 27.1 is amended by revising paragraph (b)(2) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  27.1  Basis and purpose.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (2) 746-758 MHz, 775-788 MHz, and 805-806 MHz.
* * * * *


Sec.  27.4  [Amended]

0
5. Section 27.4 is amended by removing the following definitions ``700 
MHz Public/Private Partnership,'' ``Network Assets Holder,'' ``Network 
Sharing Agreement (NSA)'' Operating Company,'' ``Public Safety 
Broadband License,'' ``Special Purpose Bankruptcy Remote Entity Public 
Safety Broadband Licensee,'' ``Shared Wireless Broadband Network,'' 
``Special Purpose Bankruptcy Remote Entity,'' ``Upper 700 MHz D Block 
license,'' ``Upper 700 MHz D Block licensee.''

0
6. Section 27.5 is amended by revising paragraph (b) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  27.5  Frequencies.

* * * * *
    (b) 746-758 MHz, 775-788 MHz, and 805-806 MHz bands. The following 
frequencies are available for licensing pursuant to this part in the 
746-758 MHz, 775-788 MHz, and 805-806 MHz bands:
    (1) Two paired channels of 1 megahertz each are available for 
assignment in Block A in the 757-758 MHz and 787-788 MHz bands.
    (2) Two paired channels of 1 megahertz each are available for 
assignment in Block B in the 775-776 MHz and 805-806 MHz bands.
    (3) Two paired channels of 11 megahertz each are available for 
assignment in Block C in the 746-757 MHz and 776-787 MHz bands. In the 
event that no licenses for two channels in this Block C are assigned 
based on the results of the first auction in which such licenses were 
offered because the auction results do not satisfy the applicable 
reserve price, the spectrum in the 746-757 MHz and 776-787 MHz bands 
will instead be made available for assignment at a subsequent auction 
as follows:
    (i) Two paired channels of 6 megahertz each available for 
assignment in Block C1 in the 746-752 MHz and 776-782 MHz bands.
    (ii) Two paired channels of 5 megahertz each available for 
assignment in Block C2 in the 752-757 MHz and 782-787 MHz bands.
* * * * *

Subpart N--[Removed]

0
7. Remove subpart N, consisting of Sec. Sec.  27.1301 through 27.1340.

PART 90--PRIVATE LAND MOBILE RADIO SERVICES

0
8. The authority citation for part 90 is amended to read as follows:

    Authority: Sections 4(i), 11, 303(g), 303(r), and 332(c)(7) of 
the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 154(i), 161, 
303(g), 303(r), and 332(c)(7), and Title VI of the Middle Class Tax 
Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, Pub. L. 112-96, 126 Stat. 156.

0
9. Section 90.7 is amended by removing the following definitions ``700 
MHz Public/Private Partnership,'' ``Network Assets Holder,'' ``Network 
Sharing Agreement (NSA),'' ``Operating company,'' ``Public safety 
broadband license,'' ``Public Safety Broadband Licensee,'' ``Public 
safety broadband network operator,'' ``Shared Wireless Broadband 
Network, '' ``Special Purpose Bankruptcy Remote Entity,'' ``Upper 700 
MHz D Block license,'' ``Upper 700 MHz D Block licensee,'' and 
adding.the definition ``First Responder Network Authority'' to read as 
follows:


Sec.  90.7  Definitions.

* * * * *
    First Responder Network Authority. An entity established by the 
Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 as an independent 
authority within the National Telecommunications and Information 
Administration and designated by that statute to hold a nationwide 
license associated with the 758-769 MHz and 788-799 MHz bands for use 
in deploying a nationwide public safety broadband network.
* * * * *


Sec.  90.18  [Removed]

0
10. Section 90.18 is removed.

0
11. Add Sec.  90.19 to read as follows:


Sec.  90.19  Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network.

    Pursuant to the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 
2012, Public Law 112-96, 126 Stat. 156 (2012), the 758-769 MHz and 788-
799 MHz bands are allocated for use by the First Responder Network 
Authority to deploy a nationwide public safety broadband network as 
prescribed by statute.

0
12. Section 90.20 is amended in the table in paragraph (c)(3) by 
removing the entries for ``763 to 775'' and ``793 to ``805'' and adding 
in their place entries for ``758 to 775'' and ``788 to 805'' and by 
revising paragraph (d)(77) to read as follows:


Sec.  90.20  Public Safety Pool.

* * * * *
    (c) * * *

[[Page 62463]]

    (3) Frequencies.

                                       Public Safety Pool Frequency Table
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              Frequency or band                     Class of station(s)          Limitations       Coordinator
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                                                  * * * * * * *
758 to 775..................................  Base, mobile..................                77                PX
788 to 805..................................  Mobile........................                77                PX
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
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     (d) * * *
    (77) Subpart R of this part contains rules for assignment of 
channels in the 758-775 MHz and 788-805 MHz bands.
* * * * *

Subpart R--Regulations Governing the Licensing and Use of 
Frequencies in the 758-775 and 788-805 MHz Bands

0
13. Revise the subpart heading to subpart R to read as set forth above.

0
14. Section 90.521 is amended by revising the first sentence to read as 
follows:


Sec.  90.521  Scope.

    This subpart sets forth the regulations governing the licensing and 
operations of all systems operating in the 758-775 MHz and 788-805 MHz 
frequency bands. * * *
* * * * *


Sec.  90.528  [Removed]

0
15. Remove Sec.  90.528.

0
16. Section 90.531 is amended by revising the introductory text and 
paragraph (g) to read as follows:


Sec.  90.531  Band plan.

    This section sets forth the band plan for the 758-775 MHz and 788-
805 MHz public safety bands.
* * * * *
    (g) Broadband. The 758-768 MHz and 788-798 MHz bands are allocated 
for broadband communications.

0
17. Add Sec.  90.532 to read as follows:


Sec.  90.532  Licensing of the 758-769 MHz and 788-799 MHz Bands.

    Pursuant to Section 6201 of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job 
Creation Act of 2012, Public Law 112-96, 126 Stat. 156 (2012), a 
nationwide license for use of the 758-769 MHz and 788-799 MHz bands 
shall be issued to the First Responder Network Authority for a initial 
license term of ten years from the date of the initial issuance of the 
license. Prior to expiration of the term of such initial license, the 
First Responder Network Authority shall submit to the Commission an 
application for the renewal of such license. Such renewal application 
shall demonstrate that, during the preceding license term, the First 
Responder Network Authority has met the duties and obligations set 
forth under the foregoing Act. A renewal license shall be for a term 
not to exceed ten years.

Subpart AA [Removed]

0
18. Remove subpart AA, consisting of Sec. Sec.  90.1401 through 
90.1440.
[FR Doc. 2012-25235 Filed 10-11-12; 11:15 am]
BILLING CODE 6712-01-P