The US Federal Communications Commission is still quizzing Verizon on its recent proposal to buy spectrum from cable companies, and now at least one member of Congress has raised concerns as well. Senator Herb Kohl has written to both the FCC and the Department of Justice, urging them to examine the "serious competition concerns" implicit in the deal, which would allow Verizon to purchase $3.6 billion worth of spectrum from the Comcast / Time Warner / Bright House partnership known as SpectrumCo.
Although Kohl is not unconditionally against approving the deal, he urges regulators to make Verizon sell off spectrum in order to reduce its dominance in some locations. He also worries that Verizon's agreement with cable companies will reduce its incentive to offer competing services like TV over FiOS. "There is a real concern these agreements transform Verizon and the cable companies from fierce competitors into business partners because they lessen the incentive for Verizon and cable companies to compete aggressively against the other, particularly in the markets where Verizon has deployed FiOS." Verizon and cable companies have already announced that they will be selling each other's services, but the FCC and DoJ not yet made a decision on whether its spectrum purchase will go forward.