[opendtv] News: L.A. Times: Powell May Leave FCC This Winter

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: OpenDTV Mail List <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 30 Jun 2004 10:16:10 -0400

Video Radio Ink

L.A. Times: Powell May Leave FCC This Winter
The Los Angeles Times says that lobbyists for media and 
telecommunications companies are rushing to get their "pet issues" on 
the FCC's agenda, indicating a prediction that FCC Chairman Michael 
Powell may step down this winter. To make matters interesting, the 
Times also says that two additional commissioners-Republicans Kevin 
Martin and Kathleen Abernathy-also are considering leaving.

Powell has denied that he has any plans to leave his post, but he 
recently prepared a six-month strategy for resolving the 
controversial media ownership, indecency and telephone competition 
issues that have a few telecommunications squirming.

Tom Tauke, the top lobbyist for Verizon Communications, told the 
Times that the company was pressing to have telephone competition 
rules rewritten this year, fearing that a new lineup of FCC 
commissioners might take a tougher stance against the companies that 
own most of the country's local telephone lines.

  John Nakahata, a Washington lawyer who represents telephone as well 
as cable clients, said he also was moving fast. "If there's only four 
people there, it's harder to get to three votes," he said.

FCC spokesman David Fiske noted that, "at some point after three 
years as a commissioner and four years as chairman, it's time to move 
on. But I don't want to create the impression that anything's 
imminent. We'll see what happens after the election."

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