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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Feb 22, 2012.
Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 - Title I: Extension of Payroll Tax Reduction - (Sec. 101) Amends the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 to extend through the remainder of 2012 the 2% reduction in employment tax rates for employees and self-employed individuals. Eliminates the special rule for 2012 limiting the amount of wages eligible for such tax rate reduction.
Title II: Unemployment Benefit Continuation and Program Improvement - Extended Benefits, Reemployment, and Program Integrity Improvement Act - Subtitle A: Reforms of Unemployment Compensation to Promote Work and Job Creation - (Sec. 2101) Amends title III (Grants to States for Unemployment Compensation Administration) of the Social Security Act (SSA) to require state unemployment compensation (UC) laws to require, as a condition of eligibility for regular compensation for any week, that an UC claimant be able to work, available to work, and actively seeking work.
(Sec. 2102) Authorizes the Secretary of Labor to enter into agreements with up to 10 states to allow them to conduct demonstration projects to test and evaluate measures designed to: (1) expedite the reemployment of individuals who establish initial eligibility for UC under state law, or (2) improve the effectiveness of a state in carrying out its state law with respect to reemployment.
(Sec. 2103) Amends the Internal Revenue Code and the SSA title III to require states (which, currently, are merely authorized) to reduce current unemployment benefits to recover prior unemployment benefit overpayments.
Amends the SSA to authorize a state to reduce current unemployment benefits to recover prior federal additional compensation overpayments and prior unemployment benefit overpayments of another state.
(Sec. 2104) Amends the SSA title IX (Miscellaneous Provisions Relating to Employment Security) to require the Secretary to designate a data exchange standard for any category of information required for data matching in the federal-state unemployment insurance system.
(Sec. 2105) Amends the SSA title III to declare that nothing in such Act or any other federal law shall be considered to prevent a state from enacting legislation to provide for: (1) testing an UC applicant for the unlawful use of controlled substances as a condition for receiving UC, if such applicant was terminated from employment most recently because of such use or is an individual for whom suitable work is only available in an occupation that regularly conducts drug testing; or (2) denying UC to the applicant on the basis of such test result.
Subtitle B: Provisions Relating to Extended Benefits - Unemployment Benefits Extension Act of 2012 - (Sec. 2122) Amends the Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2008 (SSA, 2008) with respect to the state-established individual emergency unemployment compensation account (EUCA). Extends the final date for entering a federal-state agreement under the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program through January 2, 2013. Repeals current transitional requirements for an individual's remaining EUCA payments.
Revises the triggers for Tier-2, Tier-3, and Tier-4 augmentation payments to an individual's EUCA .
Modifies the duration of the state availability of Tier-1, Tier-2, Tier-3, and Tier-4 of the EUC program during: (1) March-May 2012, (2) June-August 2012, and (3) September-December 2012.
(Sec. 2123) Amends the Assistance for Unemployed Workers and Struggling Families Act to extend until December 31, 2012, requirements that federal payments to states cover 100% of EUC.
Amends the Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2008 to exempt weeks of unemployment between enactment of this Act and June 30, 2013, from the prohibition in the Federal-State Extended Unemployment Compensation Act of 1970 (FSEUCA of 1970) against federal matching payments to a state for the first week in an individual's eligibility period for which extended compensation or sharable regular compensation is paid if the state law provides for payment of regular compensation to an individual for his or her first week of otherwise compensable unemployment. (Thus allows temporary federal matching for the first week of extended benefits for states with no waiting period.)
Amends the FSEUCA of 1970 to postpone similarly from February 29, 2012, to December 31, 2012, termination of the period during which a state may determine its "on" and "off" indicators according to specified temporary substitutions in its formula.
(Sec. 2124) Amends the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act to extend through December 31, 2012, the temporary increase in extended unemployment benefits for employees with 10 or more years of service as well as for those with less than 10.
Subtitle C: Improving Reemployment Strategies Under the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Program - (Sec. 2141) Amends the SSA, 2008 to allow a state agency to make EUC payments to individuals who are able to work, available to work, and actively seeking work.
(Sec. 2142) Includes in a federal-state agreement a requirement that a state provide reemployment services and reemployment eligibility assessment activities to certain recipients of EUC.
Conditions an individual's continuing eligibility for EUC for any week on whether such individual has been referred to such services or activities and participated, or has completed such participation, unless there is justifiable cause for failure to do so.
Makes FY2012-FY2013 appropriations for such services and activities.
(Sec. 2143) Requires a state agency (which, currently, is merely authorized) to recover an EUC overpayment to an individual by deductions from such individual's EUC payment during the three-year period after such individual received the EUC payment to which he or she was not entitled.
(Sec. 2144) Makes the nonreduction rule inapplicable for a state that has enacted a law before March 1, 2012, that, upon taking effect, would violate such rule.
(Thus allows a particular federal-state EUC agreement to be effective for a state even though it passes a law that would modify the method for computing regular compensation so that the average weekly benefit amount of regular compensation payable during the period of the agreement on or after June 2, 2010, will be less than the average weekly benefit amount that otherwise would be payable during that period under state law as in effect on June 2, 2010. The "nonreduction rule" declares that a federal-state EUC agreement shall not apply, or shall cease to apply, to such a state.)
Subtitle D: Short-Time Compensation Program - Layoff Prevention Act of 2012 - (Sec. 2160) Amends the Internal Revenue Code to set forth requirements relating to short-time compensation programs to allow employers to reduce the workweek of their employees in lieu of layoffs. Provides for federal financing of state short-time compensation programs.
(Sec. 2164) Requires the Secretary of Labor to: (1) award grants to states that enact such programs; (2) develop model legislative language for use by states in developing, enacting, and implementing such programs; and (3) report to Congress and the President on their implementation.
Subtitle E: Self-Employment Assistance - (Sec. 2181) - Amends the FSEUCA of 1970 to authorize states to establish a self-employment assistance program (a program to provide unemployed individuals with an allowance in lieu of EUC to establish a business and become self-employed). Allows a participant in a self-employment assistance program to opt to discontinue such participation.
Amends the SSA, 2008 to authorize the federal-state agreement to require that a state agency administering EUC establish a self-employment assistance program to provide for the payment of EUC for up to 26 weeks as self-employment assistance allowances to individuals who meet specified eligibility criteria. Allows a participant in a self-employment assistance program to opt to discontinue such participation.
(Sec. 2182) Directs the Secretary of Labor to: (1) award grants to states for self-employment assistance programs; (2) develop model language that may be used by states in enacting such programs and provide technical assistance to states in establishing, improving, and administering such programs; (3) establish reporting requirement for states that have established such programs; and (4) report to Congress on the effectiveness of such programs.
Makes appropriations for such grants for FY2012-FY2013.
(Sec. 2183) Directs the Secretary to: (1) develop model language that may be used by states in enacting such programs; and (2) provide technical assistance and guidance in establishing, improving, and administering the programs.
Requires the Secretary to use resources available through the Department of Labor and coordinate with the Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA) to ensure that adequate funding is reserved and made available for entrepreneurial training to individuals participating in self-employment assistance programs.
Title III: Temporary Extension of Health Provisions - Subtitle A: Medicare Extensions - (Sec. 3001) Amends the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 to extend section 508 hospital reclassifications for four months through March 31, 2012. ("Section 508" refers to Section 508 of the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 [MMA], which allows the temporary reclassification of a hospital with a low Medicare area wage index, for reimbursement purposes, to a nearby location with a higher Medicare area wage index, so that the "Section 508 hospital" will receive the higher Medicare reimbursement rate.)
(Sec. 3002) Amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act (SSA), as amended by the Temporary Payroll Tax Cut Continuation Act of 2011, to extend through December 31, 2012, hold harmless provisions under the prospective payment system (PPS) for hospital outpatient department (OPD) services.
(Sec. 3003) Extends through all of 2012 the freeze in the physician payment update made for the first two months of 2012.
Directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to examine options for bundled or episode-based payments to cover physicians' services, currently paid under the Medicare physician fee schedule, for one or more prevalent chronic conditions (such as cancer, diabetes, and congestive heart failure) or episodes of care for one or more major procedures (such as medical device implantation).
Directs the Comptroller General (GAO) to examine initiatives of private entities offering or administering health insurance coverage, group health plans, or other private health benefit plans to base or adjust physician payment rates for performance on quality and efficiency as well as demonstration of care delivery improvement activities.
(Sec. 3004) Extends through 2012 the floor at 1.0 on the work geographic index in the formula for determining relative values for physicians' services for the Medicare physician payment.
(Sec. 3005) Extends through December 31, 2012, the period of incurred expenses for which an enrollee may request an exception to the ceiling on such expenses with respect to Medicare payment for outpatient therapy services. Specifies additional requirements for claims for such services
Extends through December 31, 2012, the temporary application of therapy cap to therapy furnished as part of OPD services.
Requires inclusion on claims of the national provider identifier (NPI) of the physician who reviews the therapy plan.
Directs MEDPAC to make recommendations on how to improve the outpatient therapy benefit under Medicare part B (Supplementary Medical Insurance).
Directs the Secretary to implement a claims-based data collection strategy designed to assist in reforming the Medicare payment system for outpatient therapy services.
Requires the Comptroller General to report on the implementation of a specified manual medical review process.
(Sec. 3006) Amends the Medicare, Medicaid, and SCHIP Benefits Improvement and Protection Act of 2000 to extend until June 30, 2012, an exception to a payment rule that permits laboratories to receive direct Medicare reimbursement when providing the technical component of certain physician pathology services that had been outsourced by certain (rural) hospitals.
(Sec. 3007) Extends through 2012: (1) the temporary increase in payment for ground ambulance services, (2) the increase in payment for certain urban air ambulance services, and (3) the increase in the assistance for rural providers furnishing (super rural ambulance) services in low population density areas.
Directs the Comptroller General to update the GAO report GAO-07-383 (relating to Ambulance Providers: Costs and Expected Medicare Margins Vary Greatly) to reflect current costs for ambulance providers.
Directs MEDPAC to study the appropriateness and effect of the add-on payments for ambulance providers, and if reform, and what kind of reform, of the pay schedule may be needed.
Subtitle B: Other Health Provisions - (Sec. 3101) Amends SSA title XIX (Medicaid) to extend: (1) the qualifying individual (QI) program through December 31, 2012; and (2) the total amount available for allocation under such program.
(Sec. 3102) Extends the Transitional Medical Assistance (TMA) Program through December 31, 2012.
Subtitle C: Health Offsets - (Sec. 3201) Amends SSA title XVIII to reduce by specified percentages the amount of bad debt treated as an allowable cost in the determination for FY2013 and subsequent fiscal years of reasonable costs for hospitals and skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) under Medicare.
(Sec. 3202) Directs the Secretary of HHS to rebase (reduce) by 2% the Medicare clinical laboratory fee schedule rates otherwise determined for 2013, which shall serve as the base for 2014 and subsequent years.
(Sec. 3203) Amends SSA title XIX to authorize rebasing (reduction) of state disproportionate share hospital (DHS) allotments for FY2021.
(Sec. 3204) Revises federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP) disaster recovery requirements.
(Sec. 3205) Modifies the authorization of appropriations to the Prevention and Public Health Fund for FY2013, extending it from FY2015 through FY2022 and each ensuing fiscal year.
Title IV: TANF Extension - Welfare Integrity and Data Improvement Act - (Sec. 4002) Amends part A (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) (TANF) of SSA title IV to extend the TANF program through FY2012.
(Sec. 4003) Directs the Secretary of HHS to designate a data exchange standard for any category of information required to be reported under TANF.
(Sec. 4004) Requires states to maintain policies and practices necessary to prevent the use of state TANF assistance in any transaction in any: (1) liquor store; (2) casino, gambling casino, or gaming establishment; or (3) retail establishment which provides adult-oriented entertainment in which performers disrobe or perform in an unclothed state for entertainment. Prescribes an administrative penalty for states which failure to enforce such requirement.
Requires a state family assistance plan to include how the state intends to: (1) implement policies and procedures to prevent access to assistance through any electronic fund transaction in an automated teller machine (ATM) or point-of-sale device located in such places, and (2) ensure that TANF recipients have access to using or withdrawing assistance with minimal (or no) fees or charges.
Title V: Federal Employees Retirement - (Sec. 5001) Increases by 2.3% the employee pension contribution for federal employees entering service after December 31, 2012, who have less than five years of creditable civilian service (revised annuity employees). Makes Members of Congress and other congressional employees entering service after December 31, 2012, who have less than five years of creditable civilian service, subject to the same pension contribution rate and annuity calculations as other federal employees.
(Sec. 5002) Amends the Foreign Service Act of 1980 and the Central Intelligence Agency Retirement Act to make similar changes in the pension contribution rate and annuity calculations for new employees entering the Foreign Service Pension System and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Retirement and Disability System after December 31, 2012 (revised annuity participants).
Title VI: Public Safety Communications and Electromagnetic Spectrum Auctions - (Sec. 6003) Directs the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to implement and enforce this title as if it were part of the Communications Act of 1934.
(Sec. 6004) Prohibits a person from participating in certain electromagnetic spectrum auctions or receiving public safety funds made available by this Act if the federal government, for national security reasons, has barred such person from bidding on contracts, participating in auctions, or receiving grants.
Subtitle A: Reallocation of Public Safety Spectrum - (Sec. 6101) Directs the FCC to reallocate the 700 MHz D block spectrum for use by public safety entities in accordance with this Act.
Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to increase public safety services allocation and reduce commercial use allocation by 10 megahertz within a specified range.
(Sec. 6102) Authorizes the FCC to allow flexible use of the narrowband spectrum, including for public safety broadband communications.
(Sec. 6103) Requires the FCC, within nine years after enactment of this title, to reallocate the T-Band spectrum (470-512 MHz) currently used by public safety eligibles and begin using competitive bidding auctions to grant new licenses for such spectrum.
Makes the proceeds from such auctions available to the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information (referred to as the Assistant Secretary and is the head of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration [NTIA]) to make grants for the relocation of public safety entities from the T-Band spectrum. Requires that such relocation be completed within two years after the competitive bidding is completed.
Subtitle B: Governance of Public Safety Spectrum - (Sec. 6201) Directs the FCC to reallocate and grant a license to the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) for use of the 700 MHz D block and existing public safety broadband spectrum for an initial 10-year term (subject to renewal, upon application, for additional terms of up to 10 years each).
(Sec. 6202) Directs FirstNet to ensure the establishment of a nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network.
Requires that the network be based on a single, national network architecture that evolves with technological advancements and consists initially of: (1) a core network of national and regional data centers based on commercial standards providing connectivity between the radio access network and the public Internet or switched network; and (2) a radio access network of cell site equipment based on commercial standards enabling wireless communications with devices using the public safety broadband spectrum while taking into account the plans developed in the state, local, and tribal planning and implementation grant program established in this title.
(Sec. 6203) Establishes within the FCC the Technical Advisory Board for First Responder Interoperability (Interoperability Board). Requires the FCC Chairman to appoint 14 voting members including specified representatives from national, regional, and rural wireless providers; equipment manufacturers; public safety entities; and state and local governments. Permits the Assistant Secretary to appoint one nonvoting member.
Directs the Interoperability Board to develop recommended minimum technical requirements to ensure a nationwide level of interoperability for the network based on Long Term Evolution (LTE) commercial standards. Requires the FCC to approve the recommendations, with any necessary revisions, and transmit the recommendations to FirstNet.
Terminates the Interoperability Board 15 days after the FCC transmits such recommendations to FirstNet.
(Sec. 6204) Establishes FirstNet within NTIA.
Requires that FirstNet be headed by a FirstNet Board consisting of: (1) the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS); (2) the Attorney General (DOJ); (3) the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB); and (4) 12 individuals appointed by the Secretary of Commerce, including public safety professionals and representatives for the collective interests of states, localities, tribes, and territories. Requires that all FirstNet Board members be U.S. citizens.
Requires the Secretary of Commerce to select the Chair of the FirstNet Board. Requires the FirstNet Board to meet at least once each quarter.
(Sec. 6205) Directs FirstNet to establish a standing public safety advisory committee. Permits FirstNet to select a program manager to carry out the duties and responsibilities of deploying and operating the network.
(Sec. 6206) Requires that FirstNet hold the single public safety wireless license and take all actions necessary to ensure the building, deployment, and operation of the network, including by: (1) ensuring nationwide standards for network use and access; (2) issuing open, transparent, and competitive requests for proposals to private sector entities for building, operating, and maintaining the network; (3) encouraging that such requests leverage existing commercial wireless infrastructure; and (4) managing and overseeing implementation and execution of contracts with nonfederal entities.
Directs FirstNet to: (1) ensure the safety, security, and resiliency of the network, including requirements for protecting and monitoring the network to protect against cyberattack; (2) require that network equipment be built to open, non-proprietary, commercially available standards, as well as be capable of being used by any public safety entity and by multiple vendors across all 700 MHz band public safety broadband networks, and, in addition, be backward-compatible with existing commercial networks; (3) promote integration with public safety answering points; and (4) address special considerations for regional areas with unique homeland security or national security needs.
Requires FirstNet to enter roaming agreements with commercial network providers to allow the network to roam onto commercial networks and receive priority access for public safety communications during emergencies.
Prohibits FirstNet from negotiating or entering agreements with foreign governments on behalf of the United States.
Establishes in the Treasury the Network Construction Fund for FirstNet to carry out its functions and the NTIA to make grants to states.
Terminates FirstNet 15 years after enactment of this title.
Requires a Comptroller General report on the action Congress should take regarding the termination of FirstNet.
(Sec. 6207) Authorizes the NTIA to borrow up to a specified amount from the Treasury (prior to the deposit of proceeds into the Public Safety Trust Fund established by this Act from incentive and federal spectrum reallocation auctions) to implement this subtitle. Requires the NTIA to reimburse the Treasury from the Public Safety Trust Fund.
(Sec. 6208) Authorizes FirstNet to assess and collect network user fees, including from any public safety entity seeking access to or use of the network. Authorizes FirstNet to also collect leasing fees from public-private arrangements to construct, manage, and operate the network with entities seeking: (1) access to network capacity for non-public safety services or use of spectrum for certain commercial transmissions, or (2) access to or use of any equipment or infrastructure.
Requires that the total fees assessed each fiscal year be sufficient, and not exceed the amount necessary, to recoup the total expenses of FirstNet each year in carrying out this subtitle.
Requires that such fees be approved annually by the NTIA.
(Sec. 6209) Directs the Secretary of Commerce to contract for an annual, independent audit of FirstNet. Requires the auditor to submit each audit report to Congress, the President, and FirstNet.
(Sec. 6210) Directs FirstNet to report annually to Congress.
(Sec. 6211) Authorizes the FCC to adopt rules to improve the ability of public safety networks to roam onto commercial networks and to gain priority access to commercial networks in an emergency if the public safety entity equipment is technically compatible, the commercial network in reasonably compensated, and the access does not preempt, terminate, or degrade all existing voice conversations and data sessions.
(Sec. 6212) Prohibits FirstNet from offering, providing, or marketing commercial telecommunications or information services directly to consumers.
(Sec. 6213) Permits the FCC to provide technical assistance to FirstNet.
Subtitle C: Public Safety Commitments - (Sec. 6301) Establishes the State and Local Implementation Fund to implement a state, regional, tribal, and local planning and implementation grant program.
(Sec. 6302) Directs the Assistant Secretary to establish a grant program to make matching grants (with the federal share up to 80% of costs, subject to waiver) to states to assist state, regional, tribal, and local jurisdictions to identify, plan, and implement the most efficient and effective way to utilize and integrate the infrastructure, equipment, and other architecture associated with the network to satisfy the wireless communications and data services needs of each jurisdiction.
Requires the Assistant Secretary to prioritize grants for activities that ensure coverage in rural as well as urban areas.
Directs FirstNet to provide the governor of each state: (1) notice regarding completion of the request for proposal process for the network, (2) details of the proposed plan for buildout of the nationwide, interoperable broadband network in such state, and (3) the funding level for the state as determined by the NTIA. Requires each governor, within a specified period, to choose whether to participate in the deployment of FirstNet-proposed network or conduct its own deployment of a radio access network in such state.
Directs states that opt-out of FirstNet proposal to submit an alternative plan to the FCC for the radio access network within the state. Requires the FCC to: (1) approve the alternative plan, in which case the state is authorized to apply for a grant and is required to apply to the NTIA to lease spectrum capacity; or (2) disapprove the alternative plan, in which case FirstNet-proposed plan will proceed.
Provides the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia with exclusive jurisdiction to review such an FCC disapproval.
(Sec. 6303) Requires the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to research and assist with the development of standards, technologies, and applications to advance wireless public safety communications.
Subtitle D: Spectrum Auction Authority - (Sec. 6401) Requires, within three years after enactment of this Act, that: (1) the President begin withdrawing or modifying the assignment of 15 megahertz of spectrum identified by the Secretary of Commerce between 1675 and 1710 megahertz for reallocation from federal to non-federal use; and (2) the FCC, subject to exceptions, allocate specified spectrum ranges for commercial use and grant new initial licenses for such spectrum, subject to flexible-use service rules, through a system of competitive bidding.
Requires that certain auction proceeds be deposited in the Spectrum Relocation Fund to cover the relocation or sharing costs of relocated federal entities. Directs the remainder of such amounts to the Public Safety Trust Fund established by this Act.
(Sec. 6402) Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to authorize the FCC to encourage spectrum licensees to voluntarily relinquish usage rights to permit the assignment of new initial licenses subject to flexible-use service rules by sharing with such licensees a portion of the proceeds from competitive bidding auctions. Requires the FCC, as a condition to such auctions, to first conduct a reverse auction with at least two competing licensees to determine the amount of compensation licensees would accept in return for such voluntary relinquishment.
Requires, through FY2022, that specified proceeds from incentive auctions that are not shared with the licensee be deposited in the TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund established by this Act and the Public Safety Trust Fund. Directs such proceeds to be deposited in the Treasury's general fund for the sole purpose of deficit reduction after FY2022.
Directs the FCC, at least three months before any such incentive auction, to notify Congress of the methodology for calculating the amounts to be shared with licensees.
(Sec. 6403) Sets forth restrictions particular to the auction of broadcast television spectrum and the valuation of voluntarily relinquished broadcast television spectrum. Requires that the incentive amount determined by a broadcast television reverse auction include the relinquishment of all usage rights with respect to: (1) a particular television channel without receiving in return any usage rights with respect to another television channel, (2) an ultra high frequency television channel in return for receiving usage rights with respect to a very high frequency television channel, and (3) the relinquishment of usage rights in order to share a television channel with another licensee.
Requires a broadcast television station that voluntarily relinquishes spectrum usage rights in order to share a television channel and that possessed carriage rights under specified provisions of the Communications Act of 1934 on November 30, 2010, to have the carriage rights at its shared location that would apply to the station at such location if it were not sharing a channel.
Authorizes the FCC, for the purpose of making spectrum available to carry out the auction, to reassign television channels and reallocate portions of spectrum available for reallocation. Requires that all reasonable efforts be made to preserve the coverage area and population served of each broadcast television licensee.
Prohibits the FCC from involuntarily reassigning a broadcast television licensee from: (1) an ultra high to a very high frequency television channel, and (2) a television channel between 174-216 megahertz to a channel between the 54-88 megahertz frequencies.
Requires that certain relocation cost reimbursements be made to reassigned broadcast television licensees, related multichannel video programming distributors, and incumbent users of channel 37 (a band of spectrum currently reserved for radio astronomy and wireless medical telemetry service) under specified conditions. Authorizes waivers from FCC flexible use service rules in lieu of such reimbursements. Prohibits reimbursements for lost revenue.
Directs the FCC to conduct a broadcast television spectrum auction in which it assigns licenses for the reallocated spectrum. Requires that the proceeds shared with each licensee whose bid the FCC accepts in the reverse auction be at least the amount of such bid. Prohibits reassignments or reallocations from becoming effective, and bars the FCC from assigning such licenses and revoking spectrum usage rights, if the proceeds from the auction are below the reverse auction bid amount.
Establishes the TV Broadcaster Relocation Fund. Authorizes the FCC to borrow up to a specified amount from the Treasury to deposit into the Fund for the payment of relocation costs. Requires the FCC to reimburse the Treasury as funds are deposited in the Fund. Directs the Secretary of the Treasury, if amounts remain in the Fund three years after the auction, to transfer such amounts to: (1) the Public Safety Trust Fund through FY2022, and (2) the Treasury's general fund for the sole purpose of deficit reduction after FY2022.
Prohibits the FCC from completing more than one reverse auction or reorganization of broadcast television spectrum.
Makes a licensee's right to protest a proposed order of modification inapplicable to modifications under this section.
(Sec. 6404) Prohibits the FCC from preventing persons from participating in spectrum auctions if they comply with FCC procedures and meet technical, financial, character, and citizenship qualifications or would meet such qualifications prior to the grant of the license.
(Sec. 6405) Extends the FCC's auction authority until September 30, 2022.
(Sec. 6406) Requires the FCC to assess allowing unlicensed U-NII (Unlicensed National Information Infrastructure) devices in the 5 GHz band. Requires the Assistant Secretary to report to Congress on known and proposed spectrum-sharing technologies and the risk to federal users if such devices were allowed to operate in specified bands.
(Sec. 6407) Authorizes the use of guard bands for unlicensed use.
(Sec. 6408) Requires a Comptroller General report on the design and operation of each transmission system (any telecommunications, broadcast, satellite, commercial mobile service, or other communications system employing radio spectrum) so that reasonable use of adjacent spectrum does not excessively impair such system.
(Sec. 6409) Prohibits a state or local government from denying, and requires approval of, any request for collocation, removal, or replacement of an existing wireless tower or base station that does not substantially change its physical dimensions. Establishes a uniform application for federal easements and rights-of-way and a master contract process for siting wireless facilities on federal property and buildings.
(Sec. 6410) Assigns to the Assistant Secretary the responsibility to promote the best possible and most efficient use of electromagnetic spectrum resources across the federal government, subject to and consistent with the needs and missions of federal agencies.
(Sec. 6411) Requires the OMB to update OMB Circular A-11 to reflect recommendations in the Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee Incentive Subcommittee report, adopted January 11, 2011.
(Sec. 6412) Directs the FCC to report to Congress on the number and percent of applications for common carrier use of spectrum (from 10,700 to 11,700 megahertz, from 17,700 to 19,700 megahertz, and from 21,200 to 23,600 megahertz) that were not granted because of a lack of availability or interference concerns of existing licensees. Directs the Comptroller General to report to the FCC and Congress on whether such spectrum is being deployed in such a manner that, in areas with high demand for common carrier licenses, market forces provide adequate incentive for efficient spectrum use and ensure that the federal government receives maximum revenue for such spectrum through competitive bidding.
(Sec. 6413) Establishes the Public Safety Trust Fund. Requires that various auction proceeds be deposited in such Fund and used, through FY2022, according to a specified order of priority, to: (1) repay amounts borrowed from the general fund for FirstNet, (2) deposit specified amounts in the State and Local Implementation Fund and the Network Construction Fund, (3) fund NIST public safety research, (4) reduce the deficit, and (5) carry out the grant program established by subtitle E under the Next Generation 9-1-1 Advancement Act of 2012.
Directs amounts that remain in the Fund after FY2022 to be deposited in the general fund for the sole purpose of deficit reduction.
(Sec. 6414) Directs the FCC to report to Congress on the use of amateur radio service communications in emergencies and disaster relief.
Subtitle E: Next Generation 9-1-1 Advancement Act of 2012 - Next Generation 9-1-1 Advancement Act of 2012 - (Sec. 6502) Amends the National Telecommunications and Information Administration Organization Act (NTIA Organization Act) to reestablish and extend matching grants to eligible state or local governments or tribal organizations for the implementation, operation, and migration of various 9-1-1, E9-1-1 (wireless telephone location), Next Generation 9-1-1 (voice, text, video), and IP-enabled emergency services and public safety personnel training.
(Sec. 6503) Directs the Assistant Secretary and the Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to: (1) establish a 9-1-1 Implementation Coordination Office, and (2) submit to Congress a management plan and annual reports.
Prohibits the federal share of a grant project from exceeding 60%.
Terminates the grant program on October 1, 2022.
(Sec. 6504) Directs the General Services Administration (GSA) to identify the 9-1-1 capabilities of the multi-line telephone system (MLTS) in use by all Federal agencies in all Federal buildings and properties.
Requires the FCC to issue a public notice seeking comment on whether it is feasible for MLTS manufacturers to include mechanisms within all such systems to indicate a 9-1-1 caller's location, while avoiding unduly burdening MLTS manufacturers, providers, and operators.
(Sec. 6505) Directs the Comptroller General to report on the taxes, fees, or other charges imposed by states or political subdivisions to improve emergency communications services and the use of revenues from such charges.
(Sec. 6506) Provides immunity and liability protection, to the extent consistent with specified provisions of the Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of 1999, to various users and providers of Next Generation 9-1-1 and related services, including for the release of subscriber information.
(Sec. 6507) Directs the FCC to: (1) initiate a proceeding to create a specialized Do-Not-Call registry for public safety answering points, and (2) establish penalties and fines for autodialing (robocalls) and related violations.
(Sec. 6508) Directs the Coordination Office to report to Congress on the costs for specific Next Generation 9-1-1 services to assist the consideration of a long-term funding mechanism.
(Sec. 6509) Directs the FCC to report to Congress on recommendations for the legal and statutory framework for Next Generation 9-1-1 services, consistent with the recommendations in the National Broadband Plan developed by the FCC pursuant to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Subtitle F: Telecommunications Development Fund - (Sec. 6602) Requires that interest from an auction escrow account be dedicated to deficit reduction, thereby eliminating the deposit of such interest in the Telecommunications Development Fund (TDF) which provides capital to small businesses in the telecommunications industry.
Revises the composition of the TDF board of directors to establish an independent board. (Current law requires that the board include representatives from the FCC, the Small Business Administration [SBA], and the Department of the Treasury.)
Subtitle G: Federal Spectrum Relocation - (Sec. 6701) Amends the NTIA Organization Act to require that federal entities operating federal government stations within certain frequencies be paid for specified relocation or sharing costs incurred in planning for an auction or relocating from federal to exclusive nonfederal or shared use. (Current law pertains only to payment for certain relocations to exclusive nonfederal use.)
Permits the use of relocation funds to: (1) relocate federal government stations in order to permit spectrum sharing, and (2) acquire state-of-the-art replacement systems with increased functionality to achieve comparable capability of systems.
Establishes within the NTIA a technical panel composed of: (1) one member appointed by the OMB, (2) one member appointed by the Assistant Secretary, and (3) one member appointed by the FCC Chairman.
Requires, within a specified period prior to an auction of frequencies eligible for relocation or sharing, that federal entities authorized to use such frequencies submit to the NTIA and the technical panel a transition plan for the implementation of a relocation or sharing arrangement. Directs: (1) the panel to review the sufficiency of the plan, and (2) the NTIA to make the plan publicly available on its website.
Permits a federal entity or non-federal user to request that the NTIA establish a dispute resolution board to resolve a dispute over the execution, timing, or cost of a transition plan.
Allows appeals from dispute resolution board decisions to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Requires the NTIA to give priority to exclusive nonfederal use. Conditions any sharing on feasibility and cost constraints.
(Sec. 6702) Authorizes the use of the Spectrum Relocation Fund to pay relocation and sharing costs of federal entities. Allows the OMB to transfer available funds to pay for certain pre-auction estimates or research.
(Sec. 6703) Requires executive agencies that submit certain reports or notifications to Congress under the NTIA Organization Act to place any national security or other sensitive information in a separate annex. Prohibits such annexed information from being disclosed to the public or provided to any unauthorized person.
Title VII: Miscellaneous Provisions - (Sec. 7001) Repeals certain provisions requiring an acceleration in installments of corporate estimated tax.
(Sec. 7002) Amends the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011 to repeal a requirement for prepayment of merchandise processing fees.
(Sec. 7003) Prohibits the budgetary effects of this Act from being entered on either PAYGO scorecard maintained pursuant to the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010.