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GOP Senators Call Broadband Stimulus Projects Questionable

WASHINGTON, December 10, 2009 – Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are claiming that a number of stimulus funds allocated to technology-related projects have been wasted, mismanaged, or directed toward shortsighted projects.

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WASHINGTON, December 10, 2009 – Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are claiming that a number of stimulus funds allocated to technology-related projects have been wasted, mismanaged, or directed toward shortsighted projects.

According to the lawmakers, poor investment choices include funding for a broadband Internet infrastructure map, a digital television ad campaign and a California computer system.

For the ad campaign, the report found that “an ad agency was hired for $6 million one month before the switch to digital television – and reported creating three jobs with the money.” McCain and Coburn say that “in 2002, California received $66 million to upgrade its computers for the unemployment insurance program. But spent the money on other things and just got another $60 million in stimulus for the same project.”

The lawmakers also claim that the $350 million awarded to states from the Department of Commerce to build a map of its broadband Internet infrastructure, duplicates existing maps.

“Rather than spend $350 million on the project, one firm said it could map the whole nation for $3.5 million – one percent of the cost. Or, anyone with a computer could Google it – for free,” concludes a summary of the report.

Broadband Breakfast is a decade-old news organization based in Washington that is building a community of interest around broadband policy and internet technology, with a particular focus on better broadband infrastructure, the politics of privacy and the regulation of social media. Learn more about Broadband Breakfast.

Broadband Data

New Broadband Mapping Fabric Will Help Unify Geocoding Across the Broadband Industry, Experts Say

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Photo of Lynn Follansbee from October 2019 by Drew Clark

WASHINGTON, December 10, 2009 – Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are claiming that a number of stimulus funds allocated to technology-related projects have been wasted, mismanaged, or directed toward shortsighted projects.

According to the lawmakers, poor investment choices include funding for a broadband Internet infrastructure map, a digital television ad campaign and a California computer system.

For the ad campaign, the report found that “an ad agency was hired for $6 million one month before the switch to digital television – and reported creating three jobs with the money.” McCain and Coburn say that “in 2002, California received $66 million to upgrade its computers for the unemployment insurance program. But spent the money on other things and just got another $60 million in stimulus for the same project.”

The lawmakers also claim that the $350 million awarded to states from the Department of Commerce to build a map of its broadband Internet infrastructure, duplicates existing maps.

“Rather than spend $350 million on the project, one firm said it could map the whole nation for $3.5 million – one percent of the cost. Or, anyone with a computer could Google it – for free,” concludes a summary of the report.

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Broadband Data

GOP Grills FCC on Improving Broadband Mapping Now, as Agency Spells Out New Rules

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Photo of former FCC Chairman Ajit Pai speaking at the March 2019 launch of US Telecom’s mapping initiative by Drew Clark

WASHINGTON, December 10, 2009 – Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are claiming that a number of stimulus funds allocated to technology-related projects have been wasted, mismanaged, or directed toward shortsighted projects.

According to the lawmakers, poor investment choices include funding for a broadband Internet infrastructure map, a digital television ad campaign and a California computer system.

For the ad campaign, the report found that “an ad agency was hired for $6 million one month before the switch to digital television – and reported creating three jobs with the money.” McCain and Coburn say that “in 2002, California received $66 million to upgrade its computers for the unemployment insurance program. But spent the money on other things and just got another $60 million in stimulus for the same project.”

The lawmakers also claim that the $350 million awarded to states from the Department of Commerce to build a map of its broadband Internet infrastructure, duplicates existing maps.

“Rather than spend $350 million on the project, one firm said it could map the whole nation for $3.5 million – one percent of the cost. Or, anyone with a computer could Google it – for free,” concludes a summary of the report.

Continue Reading

Broadband Data

Broadband Breakfast Interview with BroadbandNow about Gigabit Coverage and Unreliable FCC Data

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on

WASHINGTON, December 10, 2009 – Senators John McCain, R-Ariz., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are claiming that a number of stimulus funds allocated to technology-related projects have been wasted, mismanaged, or directed toward shortsighted projects.

According to the lawmakers, poor investment choices include funding for a broadband Internet infrastructure map, a digital television ad campaign and a California computer system.

For the ad campaign, the report found that “an ad agency was hired for $6 million one month before the switch to digital television – and reported creating three jobs with the money.” McCain and Coburn say that “in 2002, California received $66 million to upgrade its computers for the unemployment insurance program. But spent the money on other things and just got another $60 million in stimulus for the same project.”

The lawmakers also claim that the $350 million awarded to states from the Department of Commerce to build a map of its broadband Internet infrastructure, duplicates existing maps.

“Rather than spend $350 million on the project, one firm said it could map the whole nation for $3.5 million – one percent of the cost. Or, anyone with a computer could Google it – for free,” concludes a summary of the report.

Continue Reading

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