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FCC says Dish can use wireless spectrum, with limits

By Liana B. Baker

(Reuters) - Dish Network Corp said on Tuesday that the U.S. Federal Communications Commission had proposed allowing the satellite TV provider to use wireless spectrum, but would impose limits the company opposes.

The company, which is the No. 2 satellite U.S. television provider, said in a statement the FCC proposal would limit Dish's spectrum by making the company lower "power and emission levels that could cripple our ability to enter the business."

Dish General Counsel Stanton Dodge called the FCC move "significantly flawed" because the limits would make the spectrum less useful and hurt Dish's business ambitions.

An FCC spokesman confirmed that agency Chairman Julius Genachowski "had shared proposals with his colleagues" on Tuesday.

The commissioners still need to vote on the proposals and no final agency decision has been made, Dish said.

Sprint Nextel Corp , which has lobbied the FCC to impose limits on Dish, said in a statement it hopes the agency takes "the steps necessary to protect Sprint's PCS spectrum."

Dish has been waiting since March - when the agency delayed its application - to find out whether it could use the spectrum the way it wanted to help build a wireless U.S. cellular network.

Dish Chairman Charlie Ergen has spent more than $3 billion buying up wireless spectrum over the past few years. Ergen has repeatedly said the FCC's delay has hurt the company's chances of ever being competitive in the mobile market now dominated by AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc .

(Reporting by Liana B. Baker. Editing by Gary Crosse and Andre Grenon)

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