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Federal Agencies

M-Lab Celebrates 10 Years of Broadband Speed Tests, Discusses Work with Schools and Libraries

WASHINGTON, August 16, 2018 - New measures to improve broadband education and access in schools and libraries were among the innovations in broadband data touted on the second day of a conference last week on Measurement Lab. The 10 year anniversary conference was hosted on August 7 and 8 by the New American Foundation, which… Keep Reading

NTIA’s Request for Comments on Broadband Data Spurs Concerns About FCC’s Form 477

WASHINGTON, August 7, 2018 – Many in the broadband industry commenting on broadband availability data exposed the weaknesses of current Federal Communications Commission data – and not only in the data itself but in the process by which it is collected. The Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications Industry Association conducted a request for comments on actions… Keep Reading

FCC Passes ‘One Touch Make Ready,’ Designed to Speed Broadband Deployment, on a Split Vote

WASHINGTON, August 2, 2018 – The Federal Communications Commission voted to pass the new, so-called “One Touch Make Ready” policy, a measure designed to accelerate pole attachment processes for new broadband deployments. At the agency’s monthly open meeting today, the commissioners voted 3-1 to shift the framework for pole attachments to permit “simple” make-ready processes… Keep Reading

While Google and Verizon Favor ‘One Touch Make Ready,’ Comcast and AT&T Want to Drag Heels

WASHINGTON, August 2, 2018 - Google Fiber and Verizon split with AT&T and Comcast over the so-called “One-Touch Make-Ready” policy, with the former claiming that the need for faster deployment speeds make the policy essential, and the other side claiming it oversteps existing rules and jurisdiction for pole attachment regulation. Later on Thursday, the Federal… Keep Reading

U.S. is Falling Behind in Internet Influence to Europe, Russia and China, Cybersecurity Experts Tell Senate

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2018 - The U.S. is falling behind in internet regulation and risks losing the global internet leadership position to the EU, China, and Russia, some internet privacy experts said at a Senate subcommittee hearing on Tuesday. On July 31, the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet held a hearing to… Keep Reading

Rural Electric Cooperatives Pose an Obvious Solution for Deploying Fiber to Rural Areas, Says Former FCC Official

PITTSBURGH, July 31, 2018 - Rural electric cooperatives and not “small cell” deployment powered by 5G networks, may be the solution to closing the digital divide, according to Jonathan Chambers, former chief of the Federal Communications Commission’s Office of Strategic Planning. Speaking at the regional conference hosted last week here by Next Century Cities, a… Keep Reading

For Robust Broadband in the 5G Era, More Local Control May Be Required

PITTSBURGH, July 30, 2018 - Many broadband experts speaking at the Next Century Cities regional summit here said last week that city jurisdiction should take precedence over federal rules in ensuring impactful broadband deployment. The conference highlighted some of these local voices, eager for broadband deployment even as they criticize recent Federal Communications Commission moves… Keep Reading

BroadbandUSA Webinar on Statewide Strategies Highlighted Role of Community Planning, Libraries

WASHINGTON, July 23, 2018 - In rural America, data-driven tools and libraries are heading efforts to expand broadband access, according to broadband policy experts. On July 18, BroadbandUSA hosted a webinar “Statewide Strategies for Rural Digital Inclusion,” discussing state-level measures to extend broadband access to unserved rural areas. Amy Huffman, a research and policy analyst… Keep Reading

FCC Chairman Attempts to Assuage Local Government Anger Against the Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee

WASHINGTON, July 12, 2018 – In advance of the Federal Communications Commission’s open meeting on Thursday, agency Chairman Ajit Pai announced a local government representative as the new vice chair of the Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee. The announcement may be one more volley in the back-and-forth feud between local governments and the agency over a… Keep Reading

Public-Private Partnerships, Local Involvement Central to Colorado Broadband Success

WASHINGTON, July 9, 2018 - Colorado broadband officials stressed the importance of public-private partnerships in extending broadband access to unserved Americans in rural areas, and expressed doubts that the so-called fifth-generation wireless standard dubbed 5G will be the answer to closing the digital divide. Speaking at a webinar hosted by the Schools, Health, & Libraries… Keep Reading

Smart Agriculture Needs Better Broadband in Rural Areas, Say NTIA Panelists

WASHINGTON, June 26, 2018 – The lack of broadband coverage in rural areas is impeding the agriculture sector from making greater use of “precision farming,” according to experts speaking at a Commerce Department webinar on Wednesday. Speaking at a National Telecommunications and Information Administration webinar on “Smart Agriculture: Increasing Productivity Through Technology” hosted by BroadbandUSA,… Keep Reading

Justice Department Weighs in on Whether Politics Motivated the Lawsuit Against AT&T-Time Warner Merger

WASHINGTON, June 13, 2018 – Was a federal district court judge’s decision to permit AT&T’s merger with Time Warner a victory for the rule or law over politics – or was it instead another defeat for the consumer at the hand of ever-consolidating mega-entities? That question permeated Tuesday’s conference on “Free Speech and Democracy in… Keep Reading

Judge Allows AT&T-Time Warner Merger to Proceed Over Objections of Trump Justice Department

WASHINGTON, June 12, 2018 - A federal district judge on Tuesday ruled that AT&T can proceed with its $85 billion merger with entertainment giant Time-Warner, spurning Justice Department arguments that the allowing the deal to proceed would harm consumers by driving up cable television costs. District Judge Richard Leon flatly rejected the Justice Department’s  contention that… Keep Reading

Democrats Mourn Loss of Net Neutrality, But Industry Supporters Call it a New Day

This article was written and reported by Andrew Feinberg and Heather Heimbach. WASHINGTON, June 12, 2018 - As the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of Obama-era network neutrality rules took effect Monday, Democrats and net neutrality advocates vowed to continue the effort to use a Congressional Review Act resolution to roll back the new FCC rules.… Keep Reading

Senate Democrats’ Vote Against Net Neutrality Repeal a ‘Political Tool,’ Charges TechFreedom

WASHINGTON, June 11, 2018 – Before the official date on which the Federal Communications Commission’s action changing net neutrality were to go into effect, conservative technology experts slammed a recent Senate vote to restore those Obama-era network neutrality protections “The [Congressional Review Act vote] is purely being used as a political tool, and it is… Keep Reading

ZTE Not Part Of China Trade Talks, Will Not Be Let Off ‘Scot-Free’ If Export Ban Is Lifted, Kudlow Says

WASHINGTON, May 21, 2018 — Finding a way to allow Chinese telecommunications equipment maker ZTE back into US markets is not part of the Trump administration's ongoing trade talks with China and any solution will still punish the company for past actions, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said Monday. Kudlow described ZTE as "part of… Keep Reading

Kudlow Says US Has ‘Always Had A Security Concern’ On ZTE, Trump Reversal Was At Chinese Leader’s Request

WASHINGTON, May 17, 2018 -- National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow on Thursday said President Donald Trump's calls to reverse a Commerce Department order banning the Chinese telecommunications equipment firm ZTE from exporting American products came in response to a request from Chinese president Xi Jinping. "I think the president is responding to a request from President Xi to take another… Keep Reading

FCC Press Release: Wireline Competition Bureau Releases Illustrative Model Results to Aid Preparation of Comments in Response to 2018 Rate-of-Return Reform

SOURCE: The Federal Communications Commission WC Docket No. 10-90 The Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) announces the availability of illustrative model results intended to aid parties that are preparing comments in response to the 2018 Rate-of-Return Reform NPRM.1 In that NPRM, the Commission sought comment on, among other matters, whether to provide a new model offer based… Keep Reading

AT&T CEO Says Hiring Cohen Was ‘Big Mistake’ As Questions On Trump Administration Lawsuit Are Revived

WASHINGTON, May 13, 2018 - AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson on Friday announced that the company was parting ways with the executive responsible for hiring Trump “fixer” Michael Cohen in an apparent effort to grease the skids for the company’s merger with Time-Warner. The revelations of the AT&T payment to Cohen revived questions over whether Trump… Keep Reading

Sanders Won’t Say If Trump Will Sign Bill To Restore Obama-Era Net Neutrality Rules As FCC Prepares For Repeal

WASHINGTON, May 10, 2018 -- White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Wednesday declined to say whether President Trump would sign a bill that would reverse the Federal Communications Commission's repeal of network neutrality rules promulgated during the Obama administration. "We'll keep you posted when we have a specific policy announcement on that front,"… Keep Reading

Blair Levin’s Scathing Takedown of FCC’s Ajit Pai, Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee, and 5G Hype

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: We were present at the Broadband Communities Summit at which Blair Levin gave these remarks; thanks to the Coalition for Local Internet Choice for providing the complete and unvarnished record of this important and scathing speech. Remember that Levin was the former executive director of the FCC's ambitious National Broadband Plan, issued… Keep Reading

White House Announces Artificial Intelligence Summit Gathering Academia, Business and Government

WASHINGTON, May 8, 2018 -- The White House on Tuesday announced it would hold an Artificial Intelligence summit, which will "bring together over 100 senior government officials, technical experts from top academic institutions, heads of industrial research labs, and American business leaders who are now adopting these emerging technologies to benefit their customers, workers, and… Keep Reading

As Johnson Takes Oath At RUS, Purdue Remains ‘Hopeful’ On Infrastructure Plan Prospects

WASHINGTON, April 30, 2018 -- Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Monday said he is "always hopeful" that progress will be made on President Trump's $1.5 billion infrastructure plan, even as Congress shifts its focus to the upcoming primary election season. "I'm always hopeful," he said when asked about the plan's prospects shortly after a swearing-in… Keep Reading

Wireless Infrastructure is One Piece of the Broadband Puzzle for Rural America

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: The role of wireless, which is one key piece of the broadband puzzle for rural areas, will be considered at the New America Foundation on Tuesday at Noon, together with Kelsey Guyselman, policy advisor at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and an array of industry players. Spectrum as… Keep Reading

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Began Testimony Before Senate Committee with an Apology for Company’s History

WASHINGTON, April 10, 2018 – After months of seemingly-unending scandal over his company’s role in the 2018 election, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg began his first of two days of testimony on Capitol Hill Tuesday by making it clear he was well aware of the laundry list of problems with the company he created 14 years… Keep Reading

More Federal Spending on Rural Broadband Could Come Through Omnibus Budget Bill

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Rural priorities are again receiving additional emphasis in the draft spending legislation currently before Congress. Though the proposed $600 million is lower than the $2.5 billion that some had been discussing, the pending Trump infrastructure package could allocate still more funds to rural broadband priorities. Although omnibus budget bills are considered "must… Keep Reading

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross Discuss Broadband at Senate Hearing

WASHINGTON, March 16, 2018 – Questions about how the federal government will be involved in rolling out the next-generation infrastructure for wireless, known as 5G (for 5th generation) remained after a Wednesday infrastructure hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee. “With the rise of the internet and cell phones, we face the new challenge of building… Keep Reading

What to Take from What Trump Just Did to Broadcom-Qualcomm Deal

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: A great summary of what to take away from the Trump administration's blocking of Broadcom's acquisition attempt for Qualcomm, an action that appears to be have been taken quite precipitously. According to The New York Times' story on the subject, "A presidential action against foreign investment in an American company is rare and… Keep Reading

Trump to Host Thursday Meeting at White House on Role of Video Games in School Gun Violence

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: The debate over the role of violence in movies and video games never seems to end. President Trump's attempts to link video games to gun violence likely serves as another distraction effort in his "chaos"-driven White House. Trump reopens a seemingly settled debate on video games and violence, from PBS News Hour… Keep Reading

Applications for Municipalities and States to Join Key FCC Intergovernmental Advisory Committee Due Monday

WASHINGTON, March 7, 2018 - Local government officials seeking to offer a corrective tonic on broadband deployment to the Federal Communications Commission may consider applying for the expanded Intergovernmental Advisory Committee. Nominations for the more-than-10-year-old group are due on Monday, March 12, at 6 p.m. ET, according to a public notice published by the FCC… Keep Reading

Supreme Court Against Extends Deadline in Berninger v. FCC, the ‘Old’ Net Neutrality Case

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Daniel Berninger has been a voice in the wilderness on the issue of net neutrality, and the Obama-era Federal Communications Commission's efforts to reclassify broadband internet access services as common carriers, since 2015. But as an internet entrepreneur, he has direct experience in working with the FCC on the regulation of Voice-over-Internet-Protocol… Keep Reading

Washington Post Piece Criticizes Senate Democrats on Net Neutrality, Giving Them ‘Three Pinocchios’

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: This piece by The Washington Post has, in turn, prompting some gloating by Republicans over at the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which criticized the "sweeping claims" of Democrats: "That consumers will see a sharp drop in Internet speeds if the Federal Communications Commission proceeds with its plan to unwind net neutrality… Keep Reading

Democrats’ Seek #OneMoreVote for Net Neutrality and Launch Congressional Review Act Against Trump FCC

WASHINGTON, February 28, 2018 – Advocates of net neutrality are pushing for congressional action to overturn a December action by the Federal Communications Commission to repeal such rules. But they will have an uphill battle if they expect President Trump to sign off on gutting an action by his appointee to lead the FCC. In… Keep Reading

Trump Administrations Unveils Details of Infrastructure Incentives, Including Spending on Rural Broadband

WASHINGTON, February 12, 2018 – President Donald Trump on Monday unveiled details of his plan to spur $1.5 trillion in new investment to revitalize the nation’s crumbling infrastructure with a combination of $200 billion worth of matching funds and block grants to be funded from to-be-determined budget savings. "We're going to get the roads in… Keep Reading

Trump Administration Releases Details of $1.5 Trillion Infrastructure Plan Leveraging $200 Billion in Federal Funds

WASHINGTON, February 11, 2018 – After a year of promises, President Donald Trump on Monday is expected to unveil his long-awaited proposal for revamping the nation’s infrastructure. The plan, which was previewed by a senior White House official over the weekend, is designed to stimulate investment with an injection of limited federal funds and streamlining… Keep Reading

Trump Administration Plans to Unveil Infrastructure Principles, Including for Broadband, on February 12

WASHINGTON, February 6, 2018 – The Trump administration will unveil principles for its long-awaited plan to spend $1.5 trillion on revamping the nation’s infrastructure this coming Monday, a White House official confirmed to BroadbandBreakfast.com. Trump alluded to the forthcoming plan during his first State of the Union address last week, when he called on Congress… Keep Reading

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