The US telecoms regulator, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has said high fees contributed to its failure to sell off the so-called ‘D-Block’ of frequencies in the recently completed auction of 700MHz spectrum. The D-Block set aside 10MHz of spectrum in the 700MHz band to be used to create a nationwide public safety network to help communications between emergency services. The network could also be used for commercial services. However, the auction attracted just one bid for the D-Block and that was well below the USD1.3 billion reserve price. Frontline Wireless, the firm that was expected to bid on the D-Block licence, withdrew from the auction before bidding began. A report from the FCC has found that the requirement for the winning bidder to pay annual lease fees was a major factor behind the failure to sell the spectrum. The regulator is planning to open a consultation process to discuss the future of the D-Block frequencies.