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American Council of Education v. Federal Commns. Comm'n, 451 F.3d 226 (D.C. Cir. 2006) (full-text).
Factual Background Edit
The petitioner sought review of an FCC ruling which found that providers of broadband Internet access and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services were "telecommunications carriers" subject to CALEA.
Appellate Court Proceedings Edit
The court contrasted the scope and definitions of the Communications Act with CALEA, noting that CALEA's definition of "telecommunications carrier" is broader than the definition within the Communications Act. Utilizing the two-step Chevron analysis the court reviewed the FCC's action to determine whether the agency's interpretation of CALEA was reasonable or permissible. The court found that, "where Congress has explicitly left a gap for the agency to fill there is express delegation of authority to the agency to elucidate a specific provision of the statute by regulation." The court held, "[s]uch legislative regulations are given controlling weight so long as they reflect reasonable policy choices."