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Removing Barriers Blog

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler Steps Down, Will Change Party Leadership of FCC
Posted December 15, 2016 by CUNA Advocacy

In line with tradition, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler stepped down today opening the door for a Republican led Commission in the new Administration. Chairman Wheeler’s departure, in conjunction with the road block to Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel’s nomination, will lead to a three person Commission in early 2017. It will include two Republicans Commissioners, Ajit Pai and Mike O’Rielly, and one Democrat Mignon Clyburn. 

This is consequential to credit unions because both Pai and O’Rielly opposed the July 2015 Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) Order, which has caused confusion and compliance burdens for credit unions when attempting to communicate with members on their cellphone via call or text. 

Some have speculated that a Trump Administration FCC will lead to relief from the TCPA Order. There is also ongoing litigation challenging the Order that could potentially provide relief. However, this issue remains complex and a number of changes would need to be made to address all credit union concerns with the Order. 

CUNA is engaged on this issue and is closely following the changes at the FCC.