FCC Seeks Comment on NTIA Petition for Rulemaking Concerning Wireless Priority Service

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The FCC has released a public notice seeking comment on a Petition for Rulemaking filed by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) urging the Commission to revise Appendix B of its Part 64 rules for Priority Access Service (PAS), now commonly known as Wireless Priority Service (WPS).  Specifically, the NTIA petition seeks to update the WPS rules to “reflect the current operations of WPS, the current Executive Branch governance structure for the service, and the need for more robust and reliable communications by National Security and Emergency Preparedness (NS/EP) users.”  During emergencies, mobile wireless networks can experience congestion due to increased call volumes and/or damages to network facilities, which in turn hinders the ability of public safety and national security and NS/EP personnel to complete emergency calls.  WPS provides these key personnel priority access and prioritized processing in all nationwide and several regional cellular networks, greatly increasing the probability of call completion. Comments are due Tuesday, August 28, 2018 and reply comments are due Friday, September 7, 2018.

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