Wednesday, November 16, 2005

FCC Commissioner Abernathy Steps Down

FCC Commissioner Kathleen Q. Abernathy, a Republican, submitted her resignation letter to President Bush. She has served four and a half years in the post.

Abernathy's resignation now leaves three of the five FCC Commissioner seats vacant. Earlier this month, President Bush nominated Michael J. Copps, of Virginia, for a new five year term as FCC Commissioner from July 1, 2005. It would be Copp's second term in the post. Copps is a Democrat. Bush nominated Deborah Taylor Tate, of Tennessee, to serve as FCC Commissioner for the remainder of the term held by former FCC Chair Michael Powell, who resigned earlier this year. This term expires June 30, 2007. Tate, who is a Republican, currently serves on the Tennessee Regulatory Authority and FCC's Federal-State Joint Conference on Advanced Telecommunications Services.

Senate Commerce Chairman Stevens has indicated that confirmation hearings for the first two seats could be held in December.

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