Competitive Enterprise Institute Vice President for Policy Wayne Crews responded today to Chairman Ajit Pai’s announcement of the formation of a new Office of Economics and Analytics (OEA) at the Federal Communications Commission:
“The FCC is an agency that can and does have direct and dramatic effect on one of our nation’s most vibrant economic sectors, that of communications and information technology. The FCC should never be “an economics free zone” with respect to its decisions to regulate and, in effect, alter the very trajectory of this industry.
“As an independent agency, the FCC is not subject to the strictures of the administration's "one in, two out" order, nor to the recent establishment of formal Task Forces specifically directed to reduce and streamline regulation across the federal government.
“For that reason, as FCC's role is analyzed and reassessed over the coming years, an internal economics office chartered with a “bias” toward reducing the role of the federal government in Americans' communications services and technologies could perform an important service, as these technologies become more widely available inclusive. An Office of Economics and Analytics could play this type of welcome streamlining and disciplinary role.”