FCC cancels Dec. 18 meeting

Several congressmen asked FCC chairman Kevin Martin to delay the session

The FCC canceled its Dec. 18 meeting at the request of the incoming congressional committee chairman. Sen. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia and Rep. Henry Waxman of California wrote FCC chairman Kevin Martin on Friday asking him to delay the session.

FCC spokesman Robert Kenny said that “in light of the letter, it does not appear that there is consensus to move forward and the agenda meeting has been canceled.”

The meeting had been scheduled to consider a plan for auctioning a part of the spectrum for free Internet use and proposed rules to handle disputes between cable companies and content providers. Both are controversial issues.

Rockefeller and Waxman said it would be “counterproductive” for the FCC to take on such issues when there already are questions about how ready the FCC is to handle the transition to digital television. Many members of Congress fear that the digital switchover will be a trouble-prone national issue.