The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has come under fire after rejecting a request from city governments to extend the period for which comments may be submitted on its plans to repeal net neutrality. The cities of Los Angeles and New York, along with the Santa Clara County Central Fire Protection District, asked the FCC to extend the April 20th deadline by an additional 60 days because they have been otherwise focused on managing the coronavirus pandemic. The FCC refused, noting that it had already granted a 30-day extension back in March, and suggesting that the pandemic has been going on long enough that the parties involved should have asked for an extension sooner.
In a statement, the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau said, "The COVID-19 crisis has spurred nonstop news coverage for at least the past month over the likely duration and extent of the pandemic... It is not plausible that Requestors first became aware of their purported need for additional time less than seven days before the deadline for initial comments on April 20. It would be unfair at this late date to extend the comment deadline when other commenters (including, presumably, other states and localities) have been preparing to submit timely filings.”