FCC Chairman defends FY 2012 budget request


Julius Genachowski appeared before the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government to explain the FCC’s FY 2012 budget. In his statement, he spent the bulk of his time discussing broadband matters.

Genachowski mentioned the FCC’s ability to pull in big bucks via spectrum auctions, while using very little money on its own. The FY12 request of $354,181,000 was couched against the $52B the Commission has raised in the last 20 years.

The request was in line with the FY11 budget. “Base funding increases are set at $2.5 million and programmatic initiatives are expected to cost $15.9 Million.  Most of the base funding increase is for the Office of Inspector General,” explained Genachowski.

Broadcast was mentioned briefly, and in relation to the upcoming (and already overdue) review of media ownership. Genachowski said, “Congress requires the Commission to review media ownership issues and competition and develop a Quadrennial Review to analyze trends and identify information for use in legislative oversight activities.  This subcommittee permitted the reprogramming request last summer providing $1 million in de-obligated funds to be used for expert studies related to local media market structures.  The current request provides $1 million for New Entrant Studies.”