300 Matching Results

Search Results

Advanced search parameters have been applied.

Telecommunications: Metropolitan Area Acquisition Program Implementation and Management

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "This testimony discusses the implementation and management of the General Services Administration's (GSA) Metropolitan Area Acquisition (MAA) program, which encourages competition for telecommunication services in large cities. GAO found that as of June 2001, GSA had awarded 37 MAA contracts for 20 metropolitan areas. Existing GSA contracts were to become MAA contracts within nine months after contractors were authorized to begin work. This goal was met in only two of the 14 metropolitan areas in which authorization was given. GSA charges customer agencies two types of fees to recover the costs of their contract management and administration activities. Although GSA does not yet allow MAA contractors to offer FTS2001 services, it is taking steps to allow crossover between the two programs."
Date: June 13, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Challenges to Assessing and Improving Telecommunications for Native Americans on Tribal Lands

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "An important goal of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, is to ensure access to telecommunications services for all Americans. This testimony is based on GAO's January 2006 report GAO-06-189, which reviewed 1) the status of telecommunications subscribership for Native Americans living on tribal lands; 2) federal programs available for improving telecommunications on these lands; 3) barriers to improvements; and 4) how some tribes are addressing these barriers."
Date: March 7, 2006
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Options for and Barriers to Spectrum Reform

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The radio-frequency spectrum is used to provide an array of wireless communications services that are critical to the U.S. economy and various government missions, such as national security. With demand for spectrum exploding, and most useable spectrum allocated to existing users, there is growing concern that the current spectrum management framework might not be able to respond adequately to future demands. This testimony, which is based on previous GAO reports, provides information on (1) the extent to which the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted market-based mechanisms for commercial use, (2) the extent to which market-based mechanisms have been adopted for federal government users of spectrum, (3) options for improving spectrum management, and (4) potential barriers to spectrum reform."
Date: March 14, 2006
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Market Developments in the Global Satellite Services Industry and the Implementation of the ORBIT Act

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In 2000, the Congress passed the Open-market Reorganization for the Betterment of International Telecommunications Act (ORBIT Act) to help promote a more competitive global satellite services market. The ORBIT Act called for the full privatization of INTELSAT, a former intergovernmental organization that provided international satellite services. In this testimony, GAO discusses (1) the impetus for the privatization of Intelsat as competition developed in the 1990s, (2) the extent to which the privatization steps required by the ORBIT Act have been implemented, and (3) whether access by global satellite companies to non-U.S. markets has improved since the enactment of the ORBIT Act."
Date: April 14, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Subscriber Rates and Competition in the Cable Television Industry

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "In recent years, rates for cable service have increased at a faster pace than the general rate of inflation. GAO agreed to (1) examine the impact of competition on cable rates and service, (2) assess the reliability of information contained in the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) annual cable rate report, (3) examine the causes of recent cable rate increases, (4) assess the impact of ownership affiliations in the cable industry, (5) discuss why cable operators group networks into tiers, and (6) discuss options to address factors that could be contributing to cable rate increases. GAO issued its findings and recommendations in a report entitled Telecommunications: Issues Related to Competition and Subscriber Rates in the Cable Television Industry (GAO-04-8). In that report, GAO recommended that the Chairman of FCC take steps to improve the reliability, consistency, and relevance of information on cable rates and competition in the subscription video industry. In commenting on GAO's report, FCC agreed to make changes to its annual cable rate survey, but FCC questioned, on a cost/benefit basis, the utility of revising its process to keep the classification of effective competition up to date. GAO believes that FCC should examine whether cost-effective alternative processes could help provide more accurate information. This testimony is based on that report."
Date: March 25, 2004
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Application of the Antideficiency Act and Other Fiscal Controls to FCC's E-Rate Program

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since 1998, the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) E-rate program has committed more than $13 billion to help schools and libraries acquire Internet and telecommunications services. As steward of the program, FCC must ensure that participants use E-rate funds appropriately and that there is managerial and financial accountability surrounding the funds. This testimony is based on GAO's February 2005 report GAO-05-151, which reviewed (1) the effect of the current structure of the E-rate program on FCC's management of the program, including the applicability of the Antideficiency Act, (2) FCC's development and use of E-rate performance goals and measures, and (3) the effectiveness of FCC's program oversight mechanisms."
Date: April 11, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: History and Current Issues Related to Radio Spectrum Management

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "As new technologies that depend on the radio spectrum continue to be developed and used more widely, managing the spectrum can grow increasingly challenging. The current legal framework for domestic spectrum management evolved as a compromise over the questions of who should determine the distribution of the spectrum among competing users and what standard should be applied in making this determination. Although initially, all responsibility for spectrum management was placed in the executive branch, this responsibility has been divided between the executive branch for managing federal use and an independent commission for managing non-federal use since 1927 . The current shared U.S. spectrum management system has processes for allocating spectrum, but these processes have occasionally resulted in lengthy negotiations between the Federal Communications Commission and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) over allocation issues. The United States also faces challenges in effectively preparing for World Radiocommunication Conferences. NTIA has several activities to encourage efficient spectrum use by federal agencies, but it lacks the assurance that these activities are effective. NTIA is required to promote efficiency in the federal spectrum it manages, which included more than 270,000 federal frequency assignments at the end of 2000. To do this, NTIA directs federal agencies to use only as much of the spectrum as they need."
Date: June 11, 2002
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Overview of the Cramming Problem

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed Internet-related cramming, which is the inclusion of unauthorized, misleading, or deceptive charges on a consumer's telephone bill, focusing on: (1) the extent of cramming complaints; (2) state and federal regulatory initiatives to protect consumers from cramming; and (3) state and federal enforcement actions against companies engaged in cramming."
Date: October 25, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Preliminary Information on the Federal Communications Commission's Spectrum Allocation and Assignment Process

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The radiofrequency spectrum is a natural resource used to provide an array of wireless communications services, such as mobile voice and data services, radio and television broadcasting, radar, and satellite-based services, which are critical to the U.S. economy and national security. Historically, concern about interference among users has been a driving force in the management of spectrum. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC)--an independent agency that regulates spectrum use for nonfederal users, including commercial users--and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)--an agency within the Department of Commerce that regulates spectrum for federal government users--have worked to minimize interference through the "allocation" and "assignment" of spectrum. Allocation involves designating "bands" of spectrum for specific types of services or classes of users, such as designating certain bands for commercial use and others for government use. Assignment provides an authorization or license to use a specific portion of spectrum to entities, such as wireless companies. Demand for the radiofrequency spectrum has exploded over the past several decades as new technologies and services have been and continue to be brought to the market in the private sector and new mission needs unfold among government users of spectrum, including wireless communications critical for public safety officials responding to natural and man-made disasters. As a result, nearly all parties are becoming increasingly concerned about the availability of spectrum for future needs, because most of the usable spectrum in the United States has already been allocated to existing services and users. Therefore, to promote a more efficient use of this resource and meet future needs, FCC has increasingly adopted more market-oriented approaches to spectrum management in recent years, including using a competitive bidding process, or auctions, to assign spectrum to commercial users. Prior to auctions, ...
Date: November 10, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Concerns Regarding the Structure and FCC's Management of the E-Rate Program

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since 1998, the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) E-rate program has committed more than $13 billion to help schools and libraries acquire Internet and telecommunications services. Recently, allegations of fraud, waste, and abuse by some E-rate program participants have come to light. As steward of the program, FCC must ensure that participants use E-rate funds appropriately and that there is managerial and financial accountability surrounding the funds. This testimony is based on GAO's February 2005 report GAO-05-151, which reviewed (1) the effect of the current structure of the E-rate program on FCC's management of the program, (2) FCC's development and use of E-rate performance goals and measures, and (3) the effectiveness of FCC's program oversight mechanisms."
Date: March 16, 2005
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: German DTV Transition Differs from U.S. Transition in Many Respects, but Certain Key Challenges Are Similar

Description: Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In Berlin, Germany, the transition from analog to digital television (DTV), the DTV transition, culminated in the shutoff of analog television signals in August 2003. As GAO previously reported, the December 2006 deadline for the culmination of the DTV transition in the United States seems unlikely to be met. Failure to meet this deadline will delay the return of valuable spectrum for public safety and other commercial purposes. Thus, the rapid completion of the DTV transition in Berlin has sparked interest among policymakers and industry participants in the United States. At the request of the Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet, House Committee on Energy and Commerce, GAO examined (1) the structure and regulation of the German television market, (2) how the Berlin DTV transition was achieved, and (3) whether there are critical components of how the DTV transition was achieved in Berlin and other areas of Germany that have relevance to the ongoing DTV transition in the United States."
Date: July 21, 2004
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Data Gathering Weaknesses In FCC's Survey Of Information on Factors Underlying Cable Rate Changes

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Over 65 percent of American households currently subscribe to cable television service. There has been increasing concern that cable television rates have been rising aster than the rate of inflation for the last few years. As required, on a yearly basis, FCC prepares a report on cable rates in areas that face and those that do not face effective competition--a term defined by statute. For information used in this report, FCC maintains information on the competitive status of cable franchises and annually surveys a sample of cable franchises. GAO examined (1) the reliability of information that cable companies provided to FCC in its annual survey regarding cost factors underlying cable rate increases and (2) FCC's process for updating and revising cable franchise classifications as to whether they face effective competition."
Date: May 6, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: GSA Has Accumulated Adequate Funding for Transition to New Contracts but Needs Cost Estimation Policy

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The General Services Administration (GSA) and its customer agencies are preparing to transition new governmentwide telecommunications contracts known as the Networx program. GSA estimated the costs for which it is responsible to be $151.5 million. This report addresses (1) the soundness of the analysis GSA used to derive the estimate of funding that would be required for the transition and (2) whether GSA will have accumulated adequate funding to pay for transition costs. In performing this work, GAO reviewed cost estimation best practices, analyzed relevant GSA documents, and performed an uncertainty analysis on GSA's estimate."
Date: February 23, 2007
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: The Changing Status of Competition to Cable Television

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on: (1) the status of competition in the subscription television market; (2) the extent to which ownership ties between cable companies and program suppliers may be affecting the development of competition; and (3) key factors that may influence the development of competition in the future."
Date: July 8, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: GSA Faces Challenges in Planning for New Governmentwide Program

Description: Testimony issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The Genera1 Services Administration (GSA) has initiated planning for its next-generation telecommunications acquisition program, known as Networx, which will replace the current Federal Telecommunications System (FTS) 2001 for longdistance and international services. It will also replace contracts for wireless and satellite communications products and services. Planning for this acquisition is occurring within an environment of tremendous change--in the industry, in underlying services and technology, and potentially in the regulatory environment. In this context, Networx can offer a significant opportunity for the federal government to flexibly acquire telecommunications services at competitive rates and apply innovative solutions to improving agency operations. At the request of the Chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform, GAO is providing an overview of acquisition planning steps completed to date, along with its assessment of challenges facing GSA and federal agencies as this acquisition proceeds."
Date: February 26, 2004
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: GSA Needs to Share and Prioritize Lessons Learned to Avoid Future Transition Delays

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Complex acquisition processes and weaknesses in project planning contributed to the delays experienced on the Networx transition, resulting in cost increases and missed savings. In particular, the complexity of the acquisition process was related to duplicative contract vehicles, the large number of service options, and changes related to the process for ensuring fair competition among service providers, among others. These issues were reported by the General Services Administration (GSA) to have been compounded by a decline in contracting and technical expertise within the agencies. GAO has identified skills gaps in the federal workforce as a government-wide high-risk area and highlighted the need for agencies to work with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to close them. Weaknesses in agencies' project planning also contributed to the delays. For example, agencies tended to transition easier items first, to demonstrate progress, before they transitioned items that needed a long lead time such as data networks and international services. As a result of the delays, GSA's estimated cost to complete the transition increased by $66.4 million, 44 percent over the baseline estimate. In addition to the extra transition costs, agencies may have paid more for similar services by staying on the FTS2001 contracts longer than planned. Specifically, in April 2010, GSA estimated that agencies could have saved 28.4 percent of their spending on FTS2001 by using Networx contracts instead. Based on this rate of savings, GAO estimates that agencies could have saved about $329 million if they had transitioned to Networx on time."
Date: December 5, 2013
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Research and Regulatory Efforts on Mobile Phone Health Issues

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The consensus of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the World Health Organization, and other major health agencies is that the research to date does not show radiofrequency energy emitted from mobile phones has harmful health effects, but there is not yet enough information to conclude that they pose no risk. Although most of the epidemiological and laboratory studies done on this issue have found no adverse health effects, the findings of some studies have raised questions about cancer and other health problems that require further study. The Cellular Telecommunication & Internet Association (CTIA) and FDA will jointly conduct research on mobile phone health affects. Although the initiative is funded solely by CTIA, FDA's active role in setting the research agenda and providing scientific oversight should help alleviate concerns about the objectivity of the report. The media has widely reported on the debate over whether mobile phones can cause health problems. Thus, the federal government's role in providing the public with clear information on this issue is particularly important. FDA has a consumer information update on mobile phone health issues but has not revised that data since October 1999. Consequently FDA does not discuss the significance of major, recently published research studies that have been reported in the press. FDA said that it has not revised the update because the scientific picture has not changed significantly."
Date: May 7, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: FCC Should Include Call Quality in Its Annual Report on Competition in Mobile Phone Services

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Over the past decade, Americans have come to rely increasingly on mobile phones to meet their business and personal needs. However, because of the nature of radio transmission and other constraints, consumers are not always able to complete calls or to hear their calls clearly. As reliance on mobile phones has increased, state officials, consumer groups, the media, and others have raised concerns about the extent of call quality problems. With regard to call quality, GAO agreed to describe the regulatory framework; determine the extent to which consumers are experiencing problems; and discuss actions for improving call quality suggested by interested parties."
Date: April 28, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Comprehensive Review of U.S. Spectrum Management with Broad Stakeholder Involvement Is Needed

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The radiofrequency spectrum--a natural resource used for wireless communications--is a critical input to various commercial and government functions. Because of expanding commercial and government demand for spectrum, there is increasing debate on how best to manage this resource to meet current and future needs. GAO was asked to examine whether future spectrum needs can be met, given the current regulatory framework; what benefits and difficulties have arisen with the application of market mechanisms to spectrum management; and what barriers exist to reforming spectrum management."
Date: January 31, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Characteristics and Competitiveness of the Internet Backbone Market

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Although most Americans are familiar with Internet service providers that give consumers a pathway, or "on-ramp," to the Internet, few are familiar with Internet backbone providers and backbone networks. At the Internet's core are many high-capacity, long-haul "backbone" networks that route data traffic over long distances using high-speed fiber lines. Internet backbone providers compete in the marketplace and cooperate in the exchange of data traffic. The cooperative exchange of traffic among backbone providers is essential if the Internet is to remain a seamless and widely accessible public medium. Interconnection among Internet backbone providers varies both in terms of the physical structure and financial agreements of data traffic exchange. The physical structure of interconnection takes two forms: (1) the exchange of traffic among many backbone providers at a "network access point"--a common facility--and (2) the exchange of traffic between two or more backbone providers at "private" interconnection points. No publicly available data exist with which to evaluate competitiveness in the Internet backbone market. Evolution of this market is likely to be largely affected by two types of emerging services. First, demand is likely to rise for time-sensitive applications, such as Internet voice systems. Second, more "broadband"--bandwidth-sensitive--content, such as video, will likely flow over the Internet in the coming years."
Date: October 16, 2001
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications Technology: Federal Funding for Schools and Libraries

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed federally created or facilitated programs for helping schools and libraries with their telecommunications and information technology efforts."
Date: August 20, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: FCC Does Not Know if All Required Fees Are Collected

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the effectiveness of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) fee collection activities, focusing on: (1) FCC's controls for ensuring that required regulatory and application fees are paid; and (2) the extent to which FCC is collecting the civil monetary penalties resulting from its enforcement actions against entities that have violated its regulations."
Date: August 31, 1999
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: Better Coordination and Enhanced Accountability Needed to Improve Spectrum Management

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The radiofrequency spectrum is the medium that enables wireless communications of all kinds, such as mobile phone and paging services, radio and television broadcasting, radar, and satellite-based services. As new spectrum-dependent technologies are developed and deployed, the demand for this limited resource has escalated among both government and private sector users. Meeting these needs domestically is the responsibility of the Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) for federal government users and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for all other users. The current legal framework for domestic spectrum management evolved as a compromise over the questions of who should determine how spectrum is allocated among competing users and what standard should be applied in making this determination. Current methods for allocating spectrum face difficulties, and FCC and NTIA's efforts are not guided by a national spectrum strategy. Since nearly all of the usable radio spectrum has been allocated already, accommodating more services and users generally involves redefining current radiofrequency allocations. One method used by FCC and NTIA is to increase the amount of spectrum that is designated for shared use, so that additional types of services or users may be placed within a particular frequency allocation. Another method, called band-clearing, involves relocating a service or user from one area spectrum to another in order to make room for a new service or user. The challenges the United States faces in preparing for World Radiocommunication Conferences, where decisions are made regarding the global and regional allocation of spectrum, have raised questions about the adequacy of the United States' current preparatory process. Under the current structure, FCC and NTIA develop positions on agenda items through separate processes that involve the users of the spectrum they manage. ...
Date: September 30, 2002
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications: GSA Needs to Improve Process for Awarding Task Orders for Local Service

Description: A letter report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "The Metropolitan Area Acquisition (MAA) program, managed by the General Services Administration (GSA), provides local telecommunications services to government agencies in selected metropolitan areas. Of the 25 cities in which MAA contracts were awarded as of January 2003, 15 were awarded to two or more providers. Such multiple-award contracts are a means of promoting competition. To ensure equity in the award of task orders under these contracts, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requires that the government provide contractors a fair opportunity to be considered. GAO was asked to review, among other things, whether GSA's implementation of the fair consideration process is consistent and the effect of any inconsistency, as well as the adequacy of GSA's documentation to support the decisions reached."
Date: April 4, 2003
Creator: United States. General Accounting Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department