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Highlights

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulates industries that affect the lives of virtually all Americans. FCC-regulated industries provide Americans with daily access to communications services, including wireline and wireless telephone, radio, and television. To ensure FCC is carrying out its mission, the commission requires a significant amount of information, such as ownership and operating information from radio and television stations. In prior reports, GAO has found weaknesses with FCC's information collection, management, and reporting processes. While FCC has taken action, the commission has not implemented all the recommendations associated with information collection, management, and reporting. As requested, this report provides information on (1) the information FCC collects; (2) how FCC collects and manages information; (3) the strengths and weaknesses, if any, in FCC's information collection and management practices; and (4) the status of FCC's internal review of its information collection and management practices. To complete this work, GAO gathered information on FCC's information collection efforts, reviewed information collection and management practices for 30 collection instruments, interviewed agency officials and industry stakeholders, and reviewed relevant laws and guidance. FCC provided comments which discuss its efforts to improve data management.

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