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Public Safety

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Pai Announces Broadband Advisory Group to Propose Model City Ordinances

WASHINGTON, January 31, 2017 – Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai on Tuesday announced the formation of a new federal advisory committee that would seek to accelerate deployment of high-speed broadband nationwide, and to close the digital divide, by providing a model approach to deployment for municipalities. “Access to broadband is increasingly critical for all… Keep Reading

How Rio Blanco Shows That a ‘Shared Network’ Can Make Sense in Rural Colorado

Broadband Breakfast Insight: A great article detailing the way that a rural community, even in a sparsely-populated region of Colorado, is able to make an open-access network work for the communities and residents of the region. -> Rio Blanco County Stays Relevant With Broadband, from Broadband Communities Magazine. Colorado became a hotbed of community broadband… Keep Reading

Illinois CIO Hardik Bhatt Addresses Need for ‘Smart City’ Technology to Run State Government

CHICAGO, Illinois, October 6, 2015 - State government need to use "Smart Cities" information technology to leapfrog to leadership among competing states, said Hardik Bhatt, chief information officer for the state of Illinois, speaking on Wednesday at the City Club here. Bhatt, the former CIO for the City of Chicago, left municipal government for the private sector, where he managed global standards-based projects for Cisco Systems. For example, he worked to help build Hamburg into a leading port in Northern Europe, and with Brazil to help create systems to help manage large-scale public events like the 2014 World Cup and the forthcoming 2016 Summer Olympics. Entering state government with Gov. Bruce Rauner, elected November 2014, Bhatt has established a four-year process to accelerate state adoption of "internet of things" technologies into state government. Hardik Bhatt, Chief Information Officer, State of Illinois [More...] Keep Reading

Pell Center Report Emphasizes Continuing Role in Broadband for State Entities

WASHINGTON, September 16, 2015 - State broadband entities and commissions continue to plan an important role in fostering economic development and digital learning, according to a recent report from the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy. The report, "State-Level Broadband Policy: A Compendium of Resources and Approaches," catalogs some of the important capabilities and tools of the federal technology program dubbed the State Broadband Initiative of the U.S. Department of Commerce. But the report, by Pell Center Adjunct Fellow Angela Siefer, also advances the discussion about state-level broadband resources by highlighting more recently discussed tools, including eRate funding, telecommunications modernization legislation, and ways to promote local infrastructure partnerships. Angela Siefer [More...] Keep Reading

Better Broadband for Rural America Means Looking Beyond Tradition: Join Us at the Rural Telecommunications Congress Today

AUSTIN, April 14, 2015 - The Rural Telecommunications Congress portion of the Broadband Communities Summit opens here Tuesday with a series of conference sessions focused on looking beyond conventional rural telecom. Rural Telecommunications CongressWith a theme of "Connecting Communities Across the Countryside of Rural America," our conference sessions on Tuesday include a discussion of the State Broadband Initiative and its impact on rural America, and a robust panel on the companies and technologies that will broadband the life-giving broadband to rural America. The RTC sessions planning for Wednesday including a summary of the lessons learned from successful broadband deployments, "Broadband and the Farm," and the impact of the internet of things on rural communities -- plus important insight on telemedicine-based health and education programs. [...] Keep Reading

Public Safety

FirstNet and Members of Congress Respond to Report that Agency Must Strengthen Financial Disclosures

December 9, 2014 – FirstNet, the national public safety wireless network for first responders, responded on Monday to a report from the U.S. Commerce Department’s Inspector General, criticizing the agency’s procedures for monitoring and disclosing conflicts of interest.   The report, dated Friday, found that board members of the First Responder Network Authority did not… Keep Reading

Internet Protocol Transition a Critical Step To Ensuring Public Safety, Say Senate Hearing Witnesses

WASHINGTON, June 11, 2014 – Even the quickest and best-designed networks can succumb to Mother Nature when a hurricane or tornado strikes a community. And when thousands of people dial 911 at the same time, modern-day networks simply aren’t equipped to handle traffic of such tremendous scale. That was the message delivered at a Thursday… Keep Reading

Onlight Aurora, Most Advanced Illinois Gigabit Communities Awardee, Shows How to Leverage Its Fiber Network

AURORA, ILLINOIS, November 5, 2013 – Just over a year ago, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn announced the first of four awards under the state’s “Gigabit Communities Challenge,” an effort to raise the bar on broadband speeds in the nation’s heartland. Of the four awardees named thus far, the Gigabit Network created by Onlight Aurora here… Keep Reading

Discussion About Needs and Issues in FirstNet at Broadband Breakfast Club Virtual Event

October 15, 2013 - The Broadband Breakfast Club posted the video of its virtual discussion, "How Will FirstNet Improve Public Safety Communications?" featuring William Vallee, State Broadband Policy Coordinator, Office of Consumer Counsel, State of Connecticut; Brett Kilbourn, Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs, Utilities Telecom Council; and Penny Rubow, Program Manager for the FirstNet program in the State of Arkansas. PLEASE BEGIN WATCHING THE VIDEO AT THE 5:00 MINUTE MARK: technical difficulties led to preview content being recorded. Keep Reading

Panelists Named for FirstNet Webinar on Tuesday, October 15, at 11 a.m. ET: Britt, Kilbourne, Vallee

October 11, 2013 – The Broadband Breakfast Club’s second virtual event, a FREE webinar on the topic of “How Will FirstNet Improve Public Safety Communications?” to take place on Tuesday, October 15, at 11 a.m. ET/10 a.m. CT., will feature Michael Britt, Program Manager, State of Arizona CIO’s Strategic Enterprise Technology Office; Brett Kilbourn, Vice… Keep Reading

Next Broadband Breakfast Club Virtual Event – on FirstNet – to Take Place on Tuesday, October 15, at 11 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON, September 25, 2013 - Following the successful launch of its first Broadband Breakfast Club virtual event, the company announced its second FREE webinar, to take place on Tuesday, October 15, at 11 a.m. ET/10 a.m. CT. The event will feature a discussion on the topic of "How Will FirstNet Improve Public Safety Communications?" REGISTER NOW for the Broadband Breakfast Club Virtual Event Keep Reading

NTIA/Public Safety/Spectrum/Wireless

Commerce Department Continues State Planning Grants for FirstNet; Special Review Committee Set for Next Week

WASHINGTON, September 6, 2013 – The National Telecommunications and Information Administration of the Commerce Department on Friday announced that it had awarded planning grants for seven states and two territories to help prepare for the First Responder Network Authority, or FirstNet. The awards, to Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Dakota, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia and… Keep Reading

Utilities’ Economies of Scale for Broadband Fiber + Smart Grid Applications = Ultra-Fast Broadband Everywhere?

June 17, 2013 – The smart grid and broadband go together like mashed potatoes and gravy. And yet why is it so hard to get electric utilities and broadband experts to dialogue on the role that electric companies can play in expanding super-fast broadband? Tomorrow’s June 2013 Broadband Breakfast Club, on Advanced Energy, Smart Grid… Keep Reading

Video of March 2013 Broadband Breakfast Club: ‘Smart Cars, the Consumer Experience and Broadband’

WASHINGTON, March 26, 2013 – Today’s cars are getting smarter because drivers are bringing smart phones into their cars and because autonomous-driving systems are getting closer and closer to market availability. Indeed, the accelerating use of the smart phone has dramatically brought the issue of auto safety to the forefront, panelists attending the March Broadband Breakfast… Keep Reading

At the Broadband Breakfast Club on Tuesday: Smart Cars as a Rapidly-Emerging Test Case for Machine-to-Machine Communication

March 18, 2013 – At the Broadband Breakfast Club, we strive to introduce our readers and club members to the most timely developments in broadband services. Think of your participation in our events as a vital early warning system to what you need to know about new directions in high-speed connectivity. The March 19, 2013,… Keep Reading

Audi of America Joins Panel on ‘Smart Cars, the Consumer Experience and Broadband’

WASHINGTON, Thursday March 14th, 2013 – The broadband policy news and events service BroadbandBreakfast.com will hold its March 2013 Broadband Breakfast Club event: “Smart Cars, the Consumer Experience and Broadband” on Tuesday, March 19th, 2013 at Clyde’s of Gallery Place, 707 7th St. NW, Washington, DC 20001 from 8 am – 10 am. Details and Registration are… Keep Reading

eRate Reform, National Public Safety Network FirstNet, Focus of Senate-FCC Oversight Hearing

WASHINGTON, March 13, 2013 – At Tuesday’s oversight hearing of the Federal Communications Commission, Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.V., on Tuesday put the focus on the portion of the Universal Service Fund designed to provide connectivity to schools and libraries, as well as on the public safety network described as FirstNet. The Senate and the agency,… Keep Reading

Spectrum Bill and Broadband Breakfast Pre Holiday Wrap Up

WASHINGTON December 14, 2011 – The FCC, the Hill and the Telecom industry has been busy over the last couple of weeks. Here is a wrap-up of the most important events. House Passes Spectrum Auction Incentive Bill After a 234-193 vote, the House Payroll Tax Extension Bill incorporated the full version of the Republican Incentive… Keep Reading

FCC Homes in on E911 Location Data at July Meeting

WASHINGTON July 13, 2011 - The Federal Communications Commission approved a Notice of Proposed Rule Making that would aim to improve the ability of first responders to locate mobile and Voice over IP (VoIP) callers who contact 911 during its July meeting on Tuesday. The Commission passed by a unanimous vote a Notice of Proposed Rule Making on improving the accuracy of location information for wireless and Voice over IP (VoIP) services. The NPRM seeks to establish a standard for VoIP location information. Keep Reading

Senate Committee Passes Public Safety Spectrum Bill

WASHINGTON, June 9, 2011 – The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation passed a deficit reducing measure Wednesday to reallocate the D-Block spectrum to public safety and gain federal funding to realize a nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network. The measure, known as the Strengthening Public-safety and Enhancing Communications Through Reform, Utilization, and Modernization (SPECTRUM) Act of 2011, is seen by proponents as a way to both reduce the federal deficit and honor first responders who lost their lives due to communications network failures during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Keep Reading

AT&T Announces LTE Launch

WASHINGTON May 25, 2011 - AT&T announced Wednesday that it will upgrade its HPSA+ network to Long Term Evolution (LTE) in five major markets starting this summer, representing the company's first steps into adopting the standard on its nationwide network. LTE networks represent upgraded technology from HSPA+ networks, allowing increases in speed capabilities. Keep Reading

LightSquared to Launch Nationwide Wholesale LTE Network

WASHINGTON May 13, 2011 – The New America Foundation gathered key industry experts on Thursday to discuss whether satellite spectrum should be reclassified so that it can be used for the expansion of terrestrial mobile broadband. With the spectrum crunch that many experts anticipate, many industry experts are calling for the reclassification of the satellite spectrum to be used for the expansion of mobile broadband. Rather than wholly reclassify the spectrum, LightSquared uses their mobile satellite spectrum holdings to deploy a nationwide Long-Term Evolution (LTE) network with both terrestrial and satellite components. Keep Reading

Walden Speaks On Net Neutrality, Spectrum At Cable Summit

WASHINGTON April 14, 2011 - Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), Chairman of the Communications and Technology Subcommittee, voiced his opposition Wednesday to network neutrality, supported increased oversight of the Federal Communications Commission and addressed how spectrum issues need to be explored with great caution at the American Cable Association summit. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion: How to Bring More Handsets to More Carriers

WASHINGTON, March 15, 2011 - Despite fanfare regarding the end of exclusivity for the Apple iPhone with the launch of a CDMA version, the reality is that many carriers are still unable to attain certain devices. While the majority of current subscribers now have access to the once-exclusive iPhone, because AT&T and Verizon have been allowed to create a duopoly in the wireless industry, from a competition standpoint, AT&T and Verizon are the only two carriers with access to the device. Translation: Less than 2 percent of domestic wireless carriers have access to one of the nation’s most coveted devices. Just as the iPhone is not the only smartphone on the market, it is also not the only device that is unavailable to consumers. Due to exclusive handset arrangements, consumers are left to choose between robust coverage where they live or the latest hot device they desire. Keep Reading

Internet2 Upgrades Speed to 8.8 Terabits per second

WASHINGTON March 10, 2011 - Internet2, the nationwide ultra high-speed education network, announced that it will increase the network’s speed by a factor of nearly 900. The network's existing speed is already approximately 1,000 times as fast as a the fastest widely-available high-speed residential connection. Internet2 will increase its speed from 100 gigabits per second (100,000 megabits per second) to 8.8 terabits per second (88,000,000 Mbps). Keep Reading

Obama to Outline High-Speed Wireless Plan Thursday in Michigan

WASHINGTON, February 10, 2011 - President Obama is scheduled to deliver a speech at Northern Michigan University, Thursday, detailing his plan to catalyze his State of the Union pledge to deliver wireless Internet to 98 percent of Americans within five years. In addition to spurring businesses to reach the 98 percent goal, the administration's Wireless Innovation and Infrastructure Initiative (WIII) aims to free up radio spectrum to alleviate an impending spectrum crunch, create a nationwide interoperable wireless network for public safety and drive innovation in the wireless broadband sector. Keep Reading

FCC Establishes LTE Standard for Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network

WASHINGTON, January 25, 2011 – The FCC issued an order Tuesday at its January open meeting that set a 4G common standard for a nationwide, interoperable, public safety mobile broadband network. The Order, which addressed changes recommended by the 9/11 Commission Report, would require the use of a Long Term Evolution (LTE) air interface in… Keep Reading

Rockefeller to Focus on Fraud, Cybersecurity

WASHINGTON, January 24, 2011 – The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV), released his legislative agenda for the upcoming year on Friday. The senator plans to prioritize three broad areas: economic security and growth, proactive homeland security and consumer protection. “In the new Congress,” said Rockefeller… Keep Reading

New Mexico to Receive $74.4 Million in Broadband Grants

WASHINGTON, August 16, 2010- New Mexico entities received a $10.6 million broadband stimulus grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, and support for a $63.8 million project from the Rural Utilities Service of the Department of Agriculture. The NTIA grant will be given to North Central New Mexico Economic Development District to deploy a middle-mile project across three counties and five tribal areas. The project will directly serve 123 community anchor institutions, 19,227 homes and 1,332 businesses. "Middle mile" projects aim to expand the availability of broadband interconnections to companies and organizations that offer service to end-users. Keep Reading

Rockefeller Attacks FCC, Calls for Change

WASHINGTON, August 4, 2010 –Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) attributed the aftermath of the Big Branch Explosion in West Virginia to “a troubling lack of communications facilities in our rural communities.” The cause of this void, Rockefeller argued, was the Federal Communications Commission’s model for reaching universal service. Keep Reading

Public Safety/Spectrum

Sprint Releases 35Mhz of Spectrum

WASHINGTON, July 22, 2010 –Sprint has announced that it has successfully completed a technological overhaul that frees up 35 MegaHerz of spectrum for general usage. The overhaul was undertaken pursuant to the Federal Government’s goal of freeing up additional spectrum, given the general scarcity of the resource, a fact which Sprint spokespeople acknowledged. Keep Reading

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