Lawrence E. Strickling: We have the flexibility to extend ICANN contract if the community needs more time

Lawrence E. Strickling has said in his latest post-ICANN 52 Singapore blog that 

“While September 2015 has been a target date, because that is when the base period of our contract with ICANN expires, we have the flexibility to extend the contract if the community needs more time to develop the best plan possible”

This concerns the timing of the planned but unlikely IANA transition where two groups of drafters are aiming to deliver a transition plan the summer. His latest statement echoes his recent remarks at the State of the Net Conference Washington, DC on January 27, 2015 where he stated

“I want to reiterate again that there is no hard and fast deadline for this transition.  September 2015 has been a target date because that is when the base period of our contract with ICANN expires.  But this should not be seen as a deadline. If the community needs more time, we have the ability to extend the IANA functions contract for up to four years.  It is up to the community to determine a timeline that works best for stakeholders as they develop a proposal that meets NTIA’s conditions, but also works.”

This comes even as U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation will convene a hearing on Wednesday, February 25, 2015, entitled “Preserving the Multistakeholder Model of Internet Governance.”

The meeting will invite Mr. Fadi Chehadé, CEO, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN); Ambassador David Gross, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP, and former U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy, U.S. Department of State; and Mr. Lawrence Strickling, Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and Administrator, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), U.S. Department of Commerce

Follow the hearing details here

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