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FCC's cell tower backup power plan gets spiked by White House

Chris Ziegler

The White House's Office of Management and Budget has rejected the FCC's plan to require carriers to juice most cell towers with at least eight hours of backup power, citing a failure to solicit public comments. In this case, "public comments" would particularly refer to the CTIA and its members, which had sued to stop the FCC in its tracks; besides the staggering cost of outfitting a majority of towers with backup power systems, carriers have argued that they already have sufficient disaster recovery plans in place for making sure service interruptions are held to a bare minimum following a loss of juice. The FCC says it's "considering [its] options" following the ruling; technically they can overrule the OMB on the matter, but they'll just be staring down the barrel of the CTIA's suit if they do.

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