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FCC Chair Asks Congress for New Robocall Legislation

FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel speaks into a microphone

Posted by Chris Alarie on Mon, 04/04/2022 - 11:20

The four current members of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took questions from the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology on March 31. As part of those discussions, FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel suggested that the FCC would benefit from legislation to give the commission additional robocall enforcement powers.

Rosenworcel explained that the FCC believes that it is unable to enforce fines for robocall violations on its own without needing the Department of Justice (DOJ) to enact the actual legal action. Rosenworcel said, “You keep on telling us to rachet up the fines, which we do. And then we take those fines over to our colleagues at the Department of Justice and we hope and pray that we take them to court. Instead of just continuing this process, this Committee should instead give us the authority to take those bad actors to court. I think it would have meaningful impact were we able to do more of that.”

Representative Anna Eshoo responded affirmatively to this request, “We’ll work with you to draw up legislation on the authorities that you need.”

Rosenworcel also covered this subject in a March 21 letter in response to Representative Vern Buchanan, which can be found on the FCC's website.