|Serrano Opening Statement at FY13 Budget Hearing for the Federal Communications Commission|
March 19th, 2012
Subcommittee Ranking Member Rep. José Serrano
"Thank you Madam Chair. I would like to join you in welcoming Chairman Genachowski and Commissioner McDowell. Like many of the agencies we deal with in this committee, the FCC plays a vital role in our everyday lives, even though much of its important work takes place behind the scenes.
"The role of the FCC grows in scope and importance as technology becomes more affordable and as more people have access to the internet through a variety of devices. I will be interested in hearing whether with these rapid innovations you have the resources to ensure that consumers are protected in the market-place.
"As improvements in technology give more people access they also mean that resources move online, and therefore internet access has become vital to being able to get a good education, find a job, or simply to connect with family around the world. Therefore, I am interested in the steps you are taking to broaden access and make sure that everyone who wants access can get it.
"One way to increase access to broadband is by allowing more spectrum to be used for that purpose. I know that in the coming year an important goal for the FCC is to increase the available spectrum for broadband uses through Congressionally mandated spectrum auctions. I look forward to hearing more details about how you plan on conducting these auctions, and what you expect the results of them to be.
"We will have time to discuss these issues as well as your other priorities during the question period, so for now I want to thank you both for your service and for appearing before us today."