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NTIA Unveils Next Steps for National Spectrum Strategy

March 12, 2024
News Media Contact
NTIA, Office of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – Today, the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) released the National Spectrum Strategy Implementation Plan, a public roadmap to meet the goals of the National Spectrum Strategy. 

The Implementation Plan details, among other things, the timeline, milestones and responsible agencies for in-depth study of the 2,786 megahertz of spectrum identified in the Strategy to determine suitability for potential new uses. That includes studying the potential for repacking, compression and relocation of airborne radars and other federal systems in the Lower 3 GHz to allow for commercial use. 

Building a spectrum pipeline is vital to meet the growing demand for airwaves to carry out public and private sector work. 

“The U.S. is in the midst of an intense competition for global leadership in the wireless space,” said Alan Davidson, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator. “The Implementation Plan offers a roadmap to realize the vision of the National Spectrum Strategy and meet the global challenge before us.”  

The Implementation Plan also specifies outcomes, responsible federal agencies and timelines to meet the goals of the Strategy, including strategic objectives for increased coordination and planning, research and development (R&D), and workforce development. It calls for using the Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee (CSMAC) to build a new cooperative process for forming spectrum policy, with implementation of a national long-term spectrum planning process expected by Sept. 2026. 

The White House released the National Spectrum Strategy and a Presidential Memorandum (PM), Modernizing United States Spectrum Policy and Establishing a National Spectrum Strategy, on November 13, 2023. The Presidential Memorandum tasked NTIA with publishing the Implementation Plan within 120 days. 

The National Spectrum Strategy identified a pipeline of spectrum bands to study for potential repurposing, called for an improved framework for collaboration on spectrum policy, urged improved spectrum access, and called for the development of a National Spectrum Workforce Plan. 

The Implementation Plan, which is intended to be a living document, outlines the beginning and expected completion dates of the specific outcomes for each strategic objective in the Strategy. 

The work on the spectrum band studies will begin this year, with the technical aspects of studies expected to be completed by the end of next year. The final reports and recommendations will be publicly available on a rolling timeline.

Band Start Federal Spectrum Study Group/Working Group Final Report
37.0-37.6 GHz March 2024 November 2024
18.1-18.6 GHz May 2024 May 2025
5030-5091 MHz March 2025 March 2026
Lower 3 GHz (3.1-3.45 GHz) March 2024 October 2026
7/8 GHz (7125-8400 MHz) March 2024 October 2026


About the National Telecommunications and Information Administration  

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is the Executive Branch agency that advises the President on telecommunications and information policy issues. NTIA’s programs and policymaking focus largely on expanding broadband Internet access and adoption in America, expanding the use of spectrum by all users, advancing public safety communications, and ensuring that the Internet remains an engine for innovation and economic growth.