After having ceased normal business operations in early January due to the partial shut-down of the U.S. federal government, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is now back in business (at least for the next two plus weeks!). But, despite the shut-down, a little-known system essential to obtaining equipment authorization under FCC regulations actually came back on-line about 10 days early.
The FCC’s Equipment Authorization System (EAS) was originally taken off line on January 4th, when the agency ended all but a handful of essential operations. The EAS is a vital element in the certification process for radio transmitting equipment under FCC rules, and is used by Telecommunications Certification Bodies (TCBs) to post grants of equipment certification. Once certification information is posted to the EAS, manufacturers are free to import and market certified equipment in the U.S.
However, according to a notice issued by the Commission, the EAS was reactivated on January 18th “after reviewing our statutory authority, the status of contract obligations and our lapse in funding plan.” The Commission noted that it would not be providing support for the EAS while the shut-down continued, and that TCBs would continue to be unable to grant equipment certification for products subject to its pre-approval guidance procedure until the agency resumed normal operations.