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Grassley Says Taxpayers Shouldn’t Pay for LightSquared Retrofit

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Calif.)

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) told the Federal Communications Commission Thursday the public should not pay to retrofit GPS receivers if the FCC approves the proposed LightSquared wireless broadband network.

Tests have shown the proposed 4G network interferes with GPS receivers. LightSquared has offered to pay to retrofit receivers used by the government, but said the commercial sector should be responsible for adjusting their receivers.

In a letter to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, Grassley said citizens should not foot the bill for ensuring that GPS receivers can co-exist with LightSquared’s network.

“At a time when our national debt is skyrocketing and state and local budgets are stretched to the breaking point, socking taxpayers with a multi-billion dollar bill and extending large unfunded mandates to state and local governments sends the wrong message to the American people,” Grassley said in the letter.

AINOnline reports the FCC has given LightSquared more testing time on a frequency band further removed from the GPS frequency.

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