Waivers Granted to AWS-3 Licensees Seeking Construction Relief

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Two licensees—Northern Valley Communications, LLC (NVC) in South Dakota and Triangle Communication System, Inc. (Triangle) in Montana—were granted waivers and extensions of their AWS-3 interim construction deadlines by the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB).  Both NVC and Triangle had commenced their license buildouts using Huawei equipment until such equipment was deemed a national security threat in 2019 and banned using universal service funds. Both parties also participated in the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Reimbursement Program, which the FCC implemented for the “rip and replacement” of banned equipment. In its order, WTB found that this development, along with supply chain issues, worker shortage, and the inability to mix and match different company’s core construction equipment, gave rise to significant delays in Triangle and NVC meeting their interim AWS-3 construction deadlines.  It found that waiver and extension of those deadlines was warranted, and held that the license terms and final buildout deadlines would not be accelerated from 12 to 10 years.

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