Wireless Bureau seeks comments on DTVN MVDDS extension request

The FCC Wireless Telecommunications Bureau on Aug. 25 issued a public notice seeking comment on whether or not the commission should waive its rules and grant a request from DTV Norwich (DTVN) to give it more time to come into compliance with its Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (MVDDS) cable cross ownership rule.

The company, which holds 45 MVDDS licenses, is required to divest of the license for call sign WQBD526, MVD001-New York because of Cablevision System’s interest in DTVN. Commission rules prohibit a cable system from operating in a service area that significantly overlaps the license area of a MVDDS.

DTVN is asking the commission to waive its Oct. 4, 2010, deadline for complying with the rule. In September 2004, the FCC granted DTVN the New York MVDDS license on the condition that it would comply with the rule within 360 days. The most recent request for a waiver is the seventh since then.

In requesting the extension, DTVN asserted that it has been hindered in complying with the cross ownership rule because it and all other MVDDS licensees have been in regulatory limbo. According to DTVN, it has continued to conduct MVDDS trials. The company also told the commission that no MMDDS equipment is commercially available, and to the best of its knowledge, no MMDDS service is operational.

The Wireless Bureau has set a deadline of Sept. 15 for comments. Reply comments are due Sept. 22.