Potential FCC Regulation: Ban on Bulk Billing

On March 5th, the FCC office of media relations released a statement that FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel had announced “a plan to lower costs and address the lack of choice for broadband services available to households in apartments, condos, public housing, and other multi-tenant buildings.” The release alludes to plans by the FCC to regulate further and potentially ban bulk billing arrangements that do not allow residents to opt-out of such an arrangement.

RealtyCom Partners is tracking this situation and plans to review in detail any Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that is issued pursuant to this FCC announcement. RealtyCom has a history of leading and participating in comments to various past FCC rulemaking procedures.

While not all service providers that typically provide bulk billing services currently have a methodology for individual resident opt-out, RealtyCom is in discussions with providers on how they are and will respond to this potential rulemaking.

RealtyCom Partners stands alongside the signatories of the letter addressed to The White House, urging law makers and the FCC to preserve broadband bulk billing agreements. Instituting a ban on these agreements would negatively impact residents and discourage investments in broadband service. We extend our gratitude to the National Multifamily Housing Council for their advocacy on this crucial issue. https://www.nmhc.org/news/press-release/2024/broad-coalition-of-housing-providers-and-lenders-cautions-white-house-over-anti-housing-affordability-regulations/

For more information from the National Multifamily Housing Council please visit: https://www.nmhc.org/news/press-release/2024/biden-administration-proposal-on-bulk-internet-billing-for-apartment-residents-hurts-renters-access

We will continue to track and make information available to our clients as these events unfold. Should you wish to discuss how this might impact your portfolio, please contact your Client Account Manager or email RealtyCom Partners at info@realtycompartners.com.

FCC Regulation: Net Neutrality

April 25, 2024 – Today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) restored net neutrality regulations initially passed in 2015, which were unwound in 2017, prohibiting service providers like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon from selectively throttling or blocking consumer internet traffic. Read the FCC press release for more info. While there’s no extraordinary impact to multifamily in particular, we expect the FCC to move onto other matters such as Chairwoman Rosenworcel’s proposal seeking to eliminate bulk contract arrangements soon. We’ll continue to keep our clients informed as things develop on our blog, emailed newsletter and LinkedIn.

FCC Regulation: NMHC Call to Action

May 13, 2024 – The National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) sent out a “2024 Rental Housing Connectivity Survey” request to their members. NMHC emphasizes the importance of this data collection to inform and persuade policymakers about the potential negative impacts of the FCC’s plans. Questions about access to or completing the survey should be directed to NMHC’s Ryan Hecker (rhecker@nmhc.org). Questions about the FCC effort should be directed to Vice President, Government Affairs, Technology and Strategic Initiatives, Kevin Donnelly (kdonnelly@nmhc.org).