Nine organizations file joint petition calling on FCC to pause T-Mobile-Sprint merger review process

A joint petition filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today by nine public interest, rural, and labor organizations calls on the Commission to pause its review of the proposed T-Mobile-Sprint merger while the Commission investigates important issues related to Sprint’s alleged Lifeline fraud. According to the FCC, Sprint was alleged to have fraudulently received tens of millions of dollars in federal subsidies by falsely claiming it provided Lifeline service to 885,000 inactive subscribers.

The new joint petition also calls the merger review process “highly unusual” and urges the Commission to seek public comment on “fundamental changes in this transaction” that have taken place since the conclusion of the formal comment period, such as DISH waiver requests, the July 26 DISH commitments to the Commission, and related developments, including the DOJ Consent Decree. The joint petition warns that failure to seek public comment would be a violation of the Administrative Procedures Act. 

The joint petition, available in full here, was filed by the Communications Workers Of America (CWA), Consumer Reports, Institute For Local Self-Reliance, New America’s Open Technology Institute, NTCA - The Rural Broadband Association, Open Markets Institute, Public Knowledge, Rural Wireless Association, and The Greenlining Institute.

Links:

Supplement to Petition to Deny (CWA, Oct. 4, 2019)