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National Society of Professional Surveyors Meets With FCC about LightSquared

October 31, 2012

The National Society of Professional Surveyors met with officials from the FCC to discuss the LightSquared issue and its effect on the GPS user community. Curt Sumner, NSPS executive director, emphasized the costs to surveying and mapping professionals as well as other GPS users, in terms of equipment replacement if they are forced to replace or upgrade their equipment; he discussed the need to resolve the uncertainty of where the LightSquared issue is going and how that uncertainty is affecting the GPS user community, and finally he discussed what steps the FCC should take on the LightSquared issue going forward.

FCC officials attending the meeting were Roderick Porter, deputy chief, International Bureau; Gardner Foster, assistant bureau chief, and Ronald Repasi, FCC engineer. The officials were receptive and acknowledged many of the points raised by NSPS. Sumner made clear that although the FCC has been in communication with the U.S. GPS Industry Council, that organization does not represent the GPS user community and rarely spoke with NSPS about the LightSquared issue. The FCC acknowledged the need for outreach to the GPS user community.

NSPS also raised the issue about LightSquared’s latest proposal involving a license modification and its plan to relinquish its authority to conduct terrestrial operations at 1545 – 1555 MHz, the part of its band closest to the GPS band. NSPS emphasized the need to test this proposed plan before issuing any new license modification to LightSquared.

The meeting between NSPS and the FCC officials was productive, with the FCC learning about the concerns of the GPS user community in general and NSPS members in particular.

For more information on this meeting and what the NSPS is doing on this and other issues affecting the geospatial community, contact Curt Sumner, NSPS executive director, at Curtis.Sumner@nsps.us.com.