BEDMINSTER, NJ — The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia today ruled on the NextWave licenses issue, effectively deciding to return the licenses to that company, which had won them at auction but which then went bankrupt prior to completing payment for the licenses. The Court of Appeals' decision may be appealed further to the Supreme Court, and requires further action by the FCC. Following is a statement from Denny Strigl, President and CEO of Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest wireless service provider:
"We are disappointed by the Court's decision. The FCC and NextWave need to settle this dispute in a way that permits the FCC's auction results to stand, and this spectrum to be quickly deployed.
"We look forward to reviewing the order and assessing our options.
"Verizon Wireless is committed to leading the way to improved wireless service in the U.S. Regardless of how the NextWave litigation plays out, it is the government's responsibility to ensure that carriers have access to unencumbered spectrum that can meet the needs of American consumers and businesses.
"The NextWave situation underscores why it is critically important for the government to develop and implement a long-term spectrum management policy, to ensure that the American people and business can take advantage of benefits to come in a world of next-generation wireless telecommunications. It's time to eliminate the spectrum cap, identify additional unencumbered spectrum and bring it to market in short order."
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 27 million wireless voice and data customers. The coast-to-coast wireless provider was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD), including Bell Atlantic Mobile, AirTouch Cellular, GTE Wireless and PrimeCo Personal Communications. Verizon Wireless has a footprint covering more than 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 96 of the top 100 U.S. markets. The company, headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, is 40,000 employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more information about the company on the Web at http://www.verizonwireless.com.