The Federal Communications Commission is misleading the public about its 332-page plan to regulate the Internet, a Republican member of the commission said Tuesday.
The net-neutrality plan could in fact open the door to new fees and taxes, as well as government control over the prices that Internet providers charge their customers, Commissioner Ajit Pai told reporters.
The claims echo attacks from Republicans on Capitol Hill, who are also scrambling to thwart the new regulations. Committees in the House and Senate have launched investigations into whether President Obama inappropriately influenced the FCC's decision, and Republican lawmakers are working on their own alternative net-neutrality legislation to override FCC action.
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who unveiled his plan last week, has denied that it would impose new fees or regulate prices. But it's difficult to determine who is right, because the commission won't release the actual text of the regulations until after it approves them on Feb. 26.
"I believe the public has a right to know what its government is doing, particularly when it comes to something as important as Internet regulation," Pai, one of two Republicans on the five-member commission, said. "I have studied the 332-page plan in detail, and it is worse than I had imagined."