Congressman Jerry McNerney (CA-09) recently sent Federal Communications Commission Chairman (FCC) Ajit Pai a letter following up on the Congressman’s request that the Chairman make publicly available all consumer complaints that the agency has received regarding internet and phone service during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Congressman asked Chairman Pai for a commitment to do this when the Chairman testified on Sept. 17 before the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s FCC oversight hearing. In response, on Oct. 23, 2020, the FCC posted general information on its website, but did not include any specific information about the complaints and if or how they were resolved.
“While your agency has made available a summary of the complaints on its website, the information that has been shared is incomplete. The American people deserve to know about the specific problems that are arising, whether the problems are being resolved, and how long it is taking to resolve them. Unfortunately, none of this information is publicly posted on your agency’s website,” wrote Rep. McNerney
“It is concerning that more than seven months into the pandemic you have still not been fully upfront with the public about the problems that consumers have been facing,” continued McNerney.
In the letter, the congressman further states, “At a time when nearly every aspect of our lives depends on connectivity, transparency and accountability with respect to connectivity problems are critical.”
Rep. McNerney requested that the Chairman make the following information publicly available by Nov. 13, 2020:
For each individual consumer complaint received by the FCC relating to internet or phone service during the pandemic, the text of the complaint (properly de-identified to protect the individual’s privacy), whether the complaint was resolved, and how long it took to resolve the complaint;
The number of complaints identified above in (1) that were referred to the Enforcement Bureau or other bureaus in the agency and what further action was taken with respect to each referred complaint; and
With respect to the Keep Americans Connected Pledge, the number of instances in which the provider did not keep the promises it made under the Pledge.
McNerney serves the constituents of California’s 9th Congressional District that includes portions of San Joaquin, Contra Costa, and Sacramento counties. For more information on Rep. McNerney’s work, follow him on Facebook and on Twitter @RepMcNerney.