Technology

Industry groups say spectrum auctions should net more than $33 billion

“A voluntary incentive auction will create jobs, enhance innovation, provide the government resources to reduce the national debt, and even give broadcasters a windfall of billions of dollars for spectrum they don’t own.”

The allocation of spectrum has drawn headlines recently thanks to the Obama administration’s national wireless plan that aims to expand next-generation mobile coverage to 98 percent of the country. The White House has said the plan would be funded entirely by revenue from the auctions.

National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) president Gordon Smith said the broadcasters have no problem with the White House’s plan as long as the government doesn’t force broadcasters to give up spectrum or introduce new spectrum taxes.

“NAB has no quarrel with incentive auctions that are truly voluntary,” Smith said. “We will oppose government-mandated digital TV service degradations that would result in a loss of service for the tens of millions of viewers who watch free and local broadcasting every day.”

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