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fcclogo NEWS

Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
News media information 202 / 418-0500
Fax-On-Demand 202 / 418-2830
Internet: http://www.fcc.gov
TTY: 202/418-2555

This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).

March 17, 2000
Meribeth McCarrick at (202) 418-0654
e-mail: mmccarri@fcc.gov

Wireless Bureau Chief Declares Bureau's Backlog Reduction Program a
Success; 99% of Backlog Eliminated

Washington, DC -- Thomas Sugrue, chief of the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, reported that the bureau reduced by 99% the number of the items that have been pending in the bureau for a year or more.

The Wireless Bureau handles all FCC domestic wireless telecommunications programs and policies including licensing and regulatory functions. The proliferation of wireless services has resulted in the bureau managing over 2 million licenses and processing over 400,000 applications and other matters annually.

"These results are extremely positive," said Sugrue. "The combination of streamlining efforts, improved tracking systems, creative use of technology, and plain hard work by staff have enabled us to effectively eliminate our backlog. In addition, we now have a system in place that should prevent backlogs from developing in the future."

At the request of Chairman William Kennard, the bureau began developing a backlog reduction plan in January 1999. The main goal of the plan was to have no matters pending longer than one year by March 2000.

Sugrue reported today that over 99% of the bureau's backlog has now been eliminated. In particular, the number of items pending more than a year in the bureau has been reduced from 64,000 in December 1998 to 630 today. A majority of the remaining pending items cannot be processed by the bureau at this time because they are awaiting other government agency approval, foreign government approval, a hearing decision, or a bankruptcy ruling.

Sugrue also indicated that while reducing its backlog, the bureau has continued to process its daily workload. Since January 1, 1999 the bureau has disposed of more than 477,000 applications and matters. Further, since October 1, 1999, 92% of all applications and matters processed by the bureau, except for backlog cases, have been processed within 90 days or less of filing. Sugrue stated the quick processing time of these matters will further improve as the bureau continues implementing the initiatives it has established as part of its backlog reduction effort.

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