“Our military is heavily reliant on an uninterrupted GPS capability to do their jobs. The risk to our forces of the widespread denial of GPS was too great and required action. I am glad that my amendment ensuring that the Department of Defense’s concerns are addressed before LightSquared moves ahead passed overwhelming in the House today,” said Turner.
In January 2011, the FCC granted a conditional waiver to a single commercial communications company, called LightSquared, to build tens of thousands of ground stations that may cause widespread interference to neighboring GPS signals. The Commander of Air Force Space Command, General William Shelton, told Turner in March 2011 that, based on analysis he had seen to-date, “that virtually every GPS receiver out there would be affected.”
Turner further stated, “It is unacceptable for our armed forces to be put at greater risk or made less effective as a result of LightSquared’s operations. Congress and the Defense Department must have assurances from the FCC and this Administration that it will fully resolve the harmful interference issue prior to granting LightSquared final authorization to provide service. Our troops are depending on our government, and the FCC, to do the right thing.”