CEI Joins Organizations Asking House to Deny Funding for FCC For Set Top Box Rule Until Cost Benefit Analysis is Done

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Dear Subcommittee Chairman Crenshaw: 

We, the undersigned organizations dedicated to economic growth and innovation in a free economy, ask that the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government include legislative language in the upcoming appropriations bill that will compel the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to provide an independent cost-benefit analysis before any funding for their proposed rulemaking for Expanding Consumers’ Video Navigation Choices; Commercial Availability of Navigation Devices (aka AllVid) can be granted.

The FCC is proposing a major change to the video marketplace through their rulemaking authority, which many inside and outside the free-market policy community consider to be both unnecessary and terribly misguided. But even if there is support for the policy, the FCC should be willing to justify their action by completing a thorough cost-benefit analysis on how this new rule will impact consumers, businesses, and the economy overall. This is not out of the ordinary nor is it singling out the agency, as there have been many cases where new rules and regulations are coupled with cost-benefit analysis; particularly when they have such a wide-scale impact.

Currently, language being offered by Rep. Tom Graves (R-Ga.) will ensure that before the FCC can move forward with the AllVid proposal, the agency must “evaluate all potential costs and benefits of the proposed rule and all potential costs and benefits of other market-based solutions.”

We hope that the Subcommittee will take this request seriously and implement the legislative language Rep. Graves has proposed. It is important that the FCC do their due diligence on such a far-reaching regulatory matter, and that includes informing Congress, and all Americans what the costs and benefits of such a proposal will ultimately be, once implemented.

We look forward to hearing from you, and meeting appropriate staff to discuss the matter further.


David Williams
Taxpayers Protection Alliance

Dan Schneider
Executive Director
American Conservative Union

Grover Norquist
Americans for Tax Reform

Ryan Radia
Associate Director of Technology Studies
Competitive Enterprise Institute

Thomas A. Schatz
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste

Katie McAuliffe
Executive Director
Digital Liberty

Pete Sepp
National Taxpayers Union