As reported in Fierce Homeland Security:
House subcommittee approves D block for public safety, FCC incentive auctions
A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee approved Dec. 1 a bill (.pdf) that allocates the 10 megahertz D block to public safety and authorizes the Federal Communications Commission to conduct incentive auctions.
Specifically, the bill restricts use of the D block to “the operation of State public safety broadband communications networks in accordance with the National Public Safety Communications Plan.” The 9/11 Commission called for allocation of the D block to public safety in 2004.
Democrats preferred a centralized national public safety broadband network, according to The Hill, but the bill gives control largely to the states.
As for the incentive auctions, TV broadcasters would be able to volunteer their spectrum for auction and share revenue with the federal government. From the auction proceeds, $3 billion would go to the TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund, then $4.96 billion would fund buildout of state public safety broadband networks and $20.4 billion would go to deficit reduction.
After that, $250 million would fund Next Generation 911–which will include data and video capabilities–because of an amendment (.pdf) from Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.).
Up to $1.5 billion generated afterward would also go to network buildout. However, starting in fiscal 2021, all incentive auction funds would be put to deficit reduction.
In a statement, the Public Safety Alliance said it is pleased with the legislation, and noted that the bill seeks a balance between “the needs of commercial wireless, public safety, broadcast and other interests, and in very difficult economic times.”
The subcommittee voted for the bill along party lines except for Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.), who voted in favor.
Read more: House subcommittee approves D block for public safety, FCC incentive auctions – FierceHomelandSecurity http://www.fiercehomelandsecurity.com/story/house-subcommittee-approves-d-block-public-safety-fcc-incentive-auctions/2011-12-05#ixzz1fzAQhfqF