News Column

Subcommittee Reviews Bipartisan Proposals to Benefit Consumers, Manufacturers, and Broadcast License Holders

July 24, 2014



WASHINGTON, July 24 -- The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology issued following news release:

The Subcommittee on Communications and Technology today discussed three proposals that would strengthen consumer protection against ID spoofing, ensure consideration of low power television and translators in auction proceedings, and reduce regulatory burden on electronics manufacturers.

"These bills will benefit consumers, streamline electronic device manufacturing for the digital age, and protect Americans from misleading communications," said subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR).

The panel discussed the E-LABEL Act, a proposal from subcommittee Vice Chairman Bob Latta (R-OH) that would help relieve the regulatory burden on electronics manufacturers. "Permitting e-labeling would not only facilitate efforts to bring our communications laws in line with 21st Century technologies, but it would benefit both manufacturers and consumers," explained Latta. "Manufacturers would have increased flexibility to design innovative products that consumers demand. It would also reduce device manufacturers' development costs. According to the Telecommunications Industry Association, e-labeling could result in over $80 million in savings per year for companies."

The panel also examined the Anti-Spoofing Act of 2013, H.R. 3670, which is authored by Reps. Grace Meng (D-NY), Joe Barton (R-TX), and Leonard Lance (R-NJ). The bill would protect consumers against fraudulent actors and deceitful text messages by updating the Truth in Caller ID Act of 2009. "Since the passage of that law, scammers have used legal loopholes and new technologies to circumvent it; thus, malicious caller ID spoofing is on the rapid rise again," said Meng. "So it's time to strengthen and tighten existing law, and shut down the routes by which it is being circumvented. And that's what our bill does."

The final bill that was reviewed was the LPTV and Translator Preservation Act of 2014, authored by full committee Chairman Emeritus Barton, which will ensure consideration of low power television (LPTV) and broadcast translator licensees by the FCC as it conducts the broadcast incentive auction. "This legislation gives low power license holders increased moral standing, if nothing else, in their petitions before the FCC," said Barton. "If this bill does become law, they will still have a secondary license, they will not have any guarantee, but they will have the strength, that legislatively, the House and the Senate, as signed by the president wants the FCC to work with low power TV license holders to give them the best chance possible to maintain their viability in the marketplace."

For more information on today's hearing and to read copies of the proposals, click here (http://energycommerce.house.gov/hearing/legislative-hearing-anti-spoofing-act-lptv-and-translator-act-and-e-label-act).

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Source: Targeted News Service


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