House Small Business Committee Chairman Sam Graves (R-MO) issued the following statement on the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to block LightSquared’s planned broadband network due to its interference with the Global Positioning System (GPS):
“Broadband investment provides substantial benefits to both consumers, small business owners, and the overall economy particularly in e-commerce, agriculture, education, health care, and other sectors. But our position has always been that Lightsquared’s plans should not be approved unless tests proved no interference for GPS devices. Interference of the GPS signal would have cost American small businesses billions of dollars to retrofit their current devices – adding yet another significant cost burden that would cause more harm to our already unstable economy. I hope that technology continues to be developed in a way that addresses the GPS interference concern on behalf of the many small businesses that rely on them, and that we can find a way to have a win-win on this issue.”
Chairman Graves led a hearing on this issue on October 12, 2011. Chairman Graves has also encouraged the National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the FCC to perform extensive testing to prove non-interference with GPS devices.