FCC Establishes ECIP Program to Incent Partitioning, Disaggregation, or Lease of Underutilized Spectrum to Rural and Tribal Providers

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The FCC has voted to establish the Enhanced Competition Incentive Program (ECIP), which will create incentives for wireless licensees to partition, disaggregate, or lease their underutilized spectrum to small carriers and Tribal Nations serving rural areas.  Under the program, a qualifying transaction must offer at least half of the licensed spectrum from a given Wireless Radio Service license to an unaffiliated eligible entity for long-term use within specific geographic parameters.  For transactions approved by the FCC, ECIP program benefits for the license holder include five-year license term extensions, one-year construction extensions, and substituted alternative construction requirements for rural-focused transactions.

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