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Federal Communications Commission
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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).

June 8, 1998

Statement from FCC Chairman William E. Kennard on the appeal Filed by the U.S. Department of Justice from the April 24, 1998 Ruling in the GWI Bankruptcy Case by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court (N.D.Texas)

I applaud the Department of Justice for filing an appeal from the bankruptcy court's April 24, 1998 ruling that permitted the GWI licensees to retain their licenses while avoiding making full payment of the amount bid for those licenses at auction. The FCC is confident that the Bankruptcy Court's decision will be overturned because it is inconsistent with established bankruptcy law as well as the Commission's rules.

The April 24 GWI ruling undermines the heart of the auction process -- the winning bidder's promises to pay the full amount of the winning bid. The ruling also interferes with the spectrum management and licensing policies set out by Congress in the Communications Act, by impairing our authority to reclaim auctioned licenses -- which belong to the American public -- in the event of a breach of that promise to pay in full.

While we will pursue this appeal, Congress also should take action by enacting legislation to clarify that bankruptcy should not be used to hold auctioned licenses captive.

- FCC -