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Rural Broadband Bill, Semiconductor Letter to White House, FCC March Meeting Agenda

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Photo of Sen. Susan Collins from October 2018 by Gage Skidmore used with permission

February 25, 2021 – Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Jacky Rosen, D-Nevada, introduced the American Broadband Buildout Act Wednesday, a bipartisan bill to ensure that rural Americans have access to broadband services at speeds they need to participate in modern society and economy.

The legislation seeks to close the “digital divide” between urban and rural America by providing up to $15 billion in matching grants to assist states and state-approved entities build infrastructure to bring high-speed broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.

“As a native of Aroostook County, I know how important high-speed Internet is to the vitality of rural communities,” said Collins in a statement.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a renewed urgency to ensuring families have a reliable connection to their loved ones, co-workers, schools, and medical services. From spurring job creation to supporting telemedicine, access to high-speed Internet unlocks almost endless benefits and possibilities.  Our bipartisan bill can help bridge the digital divide between urban and rural America by bringing broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.”

“Access to fast, reliable broadband is critical for families all across the state of Nevada — including in our rural communities — to do everything from attending school online to conducting business,” Rosen added.

The Internet and Television Association said in a statement that it is pleased with the proposed legislation.

“Through programs specifically targeted at extending high-speed internet to communities that are not yet connected, it is good to see emphasis on directing funds to areas that need help the most,” the organization said, adding the additional oversight component of the legislation will ensure accountability.

Industry letter to White House on semiconductor chip shortage

A number of telecom and media organizations sent a letter Wednesday to the White House about the global semiconductor chip shortage, requesting the administration to fully fund the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America Act.

The Internet and Television Association, America’s Communications Association, the wireless association CTIA and US Telecom signed the letter that asks the White House to consider “executive action on this and other important supply chain issues.

“We urge you to include broadband providers in measures to address the chip shortage, support initiatives that will expand domestic innovation and investment in semiconductor development and manufacturing facilities for all industries and ensure coordination across government and with industry partners on supply chain matters.”

“In the broadband sector, semiconductor chips power network infrastructure and the end user devices that, together, enable American consumers to connect to the Internet to work and learn from home, see their doctor through telemedicine, order delivery of groceries and other essentials, and keep connected to their loved ones and the world around them,” the letter reads. “The strain on global supplies of critical semiconductor components could negatively impact broadband providers’ ability to continue to deliver world-leading services.”

“As your Administration embarks on a review of supply chain issues affecting various U.S. economic sectors, we ask that you take a whole-of-government approach and leverage existing public-private partnerships addressing specific supply chain risks,” it reads.

FCC announces tentative agenda items for March meeting

Federal Communications Commission Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced Wednesday tentative agenda items for the agency’s March 17 open meeting.

  • Promoting public safety through information sharing – the commission will consider a second order that would provide state and federal agencies with direct, read-only access to communications outage data for public safety purposes while also preserving the confidentiality of that data.
  • Improving the emergency alert system and wireless emergency alerts – the commission will consider a new rule to implement section 9201 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, intended to improve the way the public receives emergency alerts on their mobile phones, televisions, and radios.
  • Facilitating shared use in the 3.45 GHz band – the commission will consider an order that would establish rules to create a new 3.45 GHz Service operating between 3.45-3.55 GHz, making 100 megahertz of mid-band spectrum available for flexible use throughout the contiguous United States.
  • Auction of flexible-use service licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band – the commission will consider a notice that would establish application and bidding procedures for Auction 110, the auction of flexible use licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band.
  • Promoting the deployment of 5G open radio access networks – the commission will seek comment on the current status of Open Radio Access Networks and virtualized network environments, including potential obstacles to their development and deployment, and whether deploying open RAN-compliant networks could further the Commission’s policy goals and statutory obligations.
  • The commission will also consider two national security matters and an Enforcement Bureau action. The FCC did not release the details.

Broadband Roundup

Democrats Criticize FTC Recusal Campaign, Broadband Price Dissatisfaction, Starlink Speeds Impress

Democratic lawmakers want end to calls to recuse Lina Khan, dissatisfaction with prices, Starlink comparable to fixed-wireless.

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FTC Chairwoman Lina Khan

February 25, 2021 – Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Jacky Rosen, D-Nevada, introduced the American Broadband Buildout Act Wednesday, a bipartisan bill to ensure that rural Americans have access to broadband services at speeds they need to participate in modern society and economy.

The legislation seeks to close the “digital divide” between urban and rural America by providing up to $15 billion in matching grants to assist states and state-approved entities build infrastructure to bring high-speed broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.

“As a native of Aroostook County, I know how important high-speed Internet is to the vitality of rural communities,” said Collins in a statement.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a renewed urgency to ensuring families have a reliable connection to their loved ones, co-workers, schools, and medical services. From spurring job creation to supporting telemedicine, access to high-speed Internet unlocks almost endless benefits and possibilities.  Our bipartisan bill can help bridge the digital divide between urban and rural America by bringing broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.”

“Access to fast, reliable broadband is critical for families all across the state of Nevada — including in our rural communities — to do everything from attending school online to conducting business,” Rosen added.

The Internet and Television Association said in a statement that it is pleased with the proposed legislation.

“Through programs specifically targeted at extending high-speed internet to communities that are not yet connected, it is good to see emphasis on directing funds to areas that need help the most,” the organization said, adding the additional oversight component of the legislation will ensure accountability.

Industry letter to White House on semiconductor chip shortage

A number of telecom and media organizations sent a letter Wednesday to the White House about the global semiconductor chip shortage, requesting the administration to fully fund the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America Act.

The Internet and Television Association, America’s Communications Association, the wireless association CTIA and US Telecom signed the letter that asks the White House to consider “executive action on this and other important supply chain issues.

“We urge you to include broadband providers in measures to address the chip shortage, support initiatives that will expand domestic innovation and investment in semiconductor development and manufacturing facilities for all industries and ensure coordination across government and with industry partners on supply chain matters.”

“In the broadband sector, semiconductor chips power network infrastructure and the end user devices that, together, enable American consumers to connect to the Internet to work and learn from home, see their doctor through telemedicine, order delivery of groceries and other essentials, and keep connected to their loved ones and the world around them,” the letter reads. “The strain on global supplies of critical semiconductor components could negatively impact broadband providers’ ability to continue to deliver world-leading services.”

“As your Administration embarks on a review of supply chain issues affecting various U.S. economic sectors, we ask that you take a whole-of-government approach and leverage existing public-private partnerships addressing specific supply chain risks,” it reads.

FCC announces tentative agenda items for March meeting

Federal Communications Commission Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced Wednesday tentative agenda items for the agency’s March 17 open meeting.

  • Promoting public safety through information sharing – the commission will consider a second order that would provide state and federal agencies with direct, read-only access to communications outage data for public safety purposes while also preserving the confidentiality of that data.
  • Improving the emergency alert system and wireless emergency alerts – the commission will consider a new rule to implement section 9201 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, intended to improve the way the public receives emergency alerts on their mobile phones, televisions, and radios.
  • Facilitating shared use in the 3.45 GHz band – the commission will consider an order that would establish rules to create a new 3.45 GHz Service operating between 3.45-3.55 GHz, making 100 megahertz of mid-band spectrum available for flexible use throughout the contiguous United States.
  • Auction of flexible-use service licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band – the commission will consider a notice that would establish application and bidding procedures for Auction 110, the auction of flexible use licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band.
  • Promoting the deployment of 5G open radio access networks – the commission will seek comment on the current status of Open Radio Access Networks and virtualized network environments, including potential obstacles to their development and deployment, and whether deploying open RAN-compliant networks could further the Commission’s policy goals and statutory obligations.
  • The commission will also consider two national security matters and an Enforcement Bureau action. The FCC did not release the details.

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Broadband Roundup

Nebraska Problems with RDOF Decision, Secure Equipment Act Moves, T-Mobile Taking Down Sprint LTE

Nebraska said FCC made inaccuracies in RDOF decision, committee pushes secure equipment forward, T-Mobile sunsetting Sprint network.

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Marco Rubio, R-Florida

February 25, 2021 – Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Jacky Rosen, D-Nevada, introduced the American Broadband Buildout Act Wednesday, a bipartisan bill to ensure that rural Americans have access to broadband services at speeds they need to participate in modern society and economy.

The legislation seeks to close the “digital divide” between urban and rural America by providing up to $15 billion in matching grants to assist states and state-approved entities build infrastructure to bring high-speed broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.

“As a native of Aroostook County, I know how important high-speed Internet is to the vitality of rural communities,” said Collins in a statement.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a renewed urgency to ensuring families have a reliable connection to their loved ones, co-workers, schools, and medical services. From spurring job creation to supporting telemedicine, access to high-speed Internet unlocks almost endless benefits and possibilities.  Our bipartisan bill can help bridge the digital divide between urban and rural America by bringing broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.”

“Access to fast, reliable broadband is critical for families all across the state of Nevada — including in our rural communities — to do everything from attending school online to conducting business,” Rosen added.

The Internet and Television Association said in a statement that it is pleased with the proposed legislation.

“Through programs specifically targeted at extending high-speed internet to communities that are not yet connected, it is good to see emphasis on directing funds to areas that need help the most,” the organization said, adding the additional oversight component of the legislation will ensure accountability.

Industry letter to White House on semiconductor chip shortage

A number of telecom and media organizations sent a letter Wednesday to the White House about the global semiconductor chip shortage, requesting the administration to fully fund the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America Act.

The Internet and Television Association, America’s Communications Association, the wireless association CTIA and US Telecom signed the letter that asks the White House to consider “executive action on this and other important supply chain issues.

“We urge you to include broadband providers in measures to address the chip shortage, support initiatives that will expand domestic innovation and investment in semiconductor development and manufacturing facilities for all industries and ensure coordination across government and with industry partners on supply chain matters.”

“In the broadband sector, semiconductor chips power network infrastructure and the end user devices that, together, enable American consumers to connect to the Internet to work and learn from home, see their doctor through telemedicine, order delivery of groceries and other essentials, and keep connected to their loved ones and the world around them,” the letter reads. “The strain on global supplies of critical semiconductor components could negatively impact broadband providers’ ability to continue to deliver world-leading services.”

“As your Administration embarks on a review of supply chain issues affecting various U.S. economic sectors, we ask that you take a whole-of-government approach and leverage existing public-private partnerships addressing specific supply chain risks,” it reads.

FCC announces tentative agenda items for March meeting

Federal Communications Commission Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced Wednesday tentative agenda items for the agency’s March 17 open meeting.

  • Promoting public safety through information sharing – the commission will consider a second order that would provide state and federal agencies with direct, read-only access to communications outage data for public safety purposes while also preserving the confidentiality of that data.
  • Improving the emergency alert system and wireless emergency alerts – the commission will consider a new rule to implement section 9201 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, intended to improve the way the public receives emergency alerts on their mobile phones, televisions, and radios.
  • Facilitating shared use in the 3.45 GHz band – the commission will consider an order that would establish rules to create a new 3.45 GHz Service operating between 3.45-3.55 GHz, making 100 megahertz of mid-band spectrum available for flexible use throughout the contiguous United States.
  • Auction of flexible-use service licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band – the commission will consider a notice that would establish application and bidding procedures for Auction 110, the auction of flexible use licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band.
  • Promoting the deployment of 5G open radio access networks – the commission will seek comment on the current status of Open Radio Access Networks and virtualized network environments, including potential obstacles to their development and deployment, and whether deploying open RAN-compliant networks could further the Commission’s policy goals and statutory obligations.
  • The commission will also consider two national security matters and an Enforcement Bureau action. The FCC did not release the details.

Continue Reading

Broadband Roundup

Infrastructure Bill Reactions, Airbnb Lets Hosts Display Wi-Fi Speeds, No Child Left Offline

Organizations applaud infrastructure bill, Airbnb gives renters view into internet speeds, op-ed to support education during Delta wave.

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

February 25, 2021 – Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Jacky Rosen, D-Nevada, introduced the American Broadband Buildout Act Wednesday, a bipartisan bill to ensure that rural Americans have access to broadband services at speeds they need to participate in modern society and economy.

The legislation seeks to close the “digital divide” between urban and rural America by providing up to $15 billion in matching grants to assist states and state-approved entities build infrastructure to bring high-speed broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.

“As a native of Aroostook County, I know how important high-speed Internet is to the vitality of rural communities,” said Collins in a statement.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a renewed urgency to ensuring families have a reliable connection to their loved ones, co-workers, schools, and medical services. From spurring job creation to supporting telemedicine, access to high-speed Internet unlocks almost endless benefits and possibilities.  Our bipartisan bill can help bridge the digital divide between urban and rural America by bringing broadband directly to homes and businesses in areas that lack it.”

“Access to fast, reliable broadband is critical for families all across the state of Nevada — including in our rural communities — to do everything from attending school online to conducting business,” Rosen added.

The Internet and Television Association said in a statement that it is pleased with the proposed legislation.

“Through programs specifically targeted at extending high-speed internet to communities that are not yet connected, it is good to see emphasis on directing funds to areas that need help the most,” the organization said, adding the additional oversight component of the legislation will ensure accountability.

Industry letter to White House on semiconductor chip shortage

A number of telecom and media organizations sent a letter Wednesday to the White House about the global semiconductor chip shortage, requesting the administration to fully fund the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America Act.

The Internet and Television Association, America’s Communications Association, the wireless association CTIA and US Telecom signed the letter that asks the White House to consider “executive action on this and other important supply chain issues.

“We urge you to include broadband providers in measures to address the chip shortage, support initiatives that will expand domestic innovation and investment in semiconductor development and manufacturing facilities for all industries and ensure coordination across government and with industry partners on supply chain matters.”

“In the broadband sector, semiconductor chips power network infrastructure and the end user devices that, together, enable American consumers to connect to the Internet to work and learn from home, see their doctor through telemedicine, order delivery of groceries and other essentials, and keep connected to their loved ones and the world around them,” the letter reads. “The strain on global supplies of critical semiconductor components could negatively impact broadband providers’ ability to continue to deliver world-leading services.”

“As your Administration embarks on a review of supply chain issues affecting various U.S. economic sectors, we ask that you take a whole-of-government approach and leverage existing public-private partnerships addressing specific supply chain risks,” it reads.

FCC announces tentative agenda items for March meeting

Federal Communications Commission Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced Wednesday tentative agenda items for the agency’s March 17 open meeting.

  • Promoting public safety through information sharing – the commission will consider a second order that would provide state and federal agencies with direct, read-only access to communications outage data for public safety purposes while also preserving the confidentiality of that data.
  • Improving the emergency alert system and wireless emergency alerts – the commission will consider a new rule to implement section 9201 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, intended to improve the way the public receives emergency alerts on their mobile phones, televisions, and radios.
  • Facilitating shared use in the 3.45 GHz band – the commission will consider an order that would establish rules to create a new 3.45 GHz Service operating between 3.45-3.55 GHz, making 100 megahertz of mid-band spectrum available for flexible use throughout the contiguous United States.
  • Auction of flexible-use service licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band – the commission will consider a notice that would establish application and bidding procedures for Auction 110, the auction of flexible use licenses in the 3.45-3.55 GHz band.
  • Promoting the deployment of 5G open radio access networks – the commission will seek comment on the current status of Open Radio Access Networks and virtualized network environments, including potential obstacles to their development and deployment, and whether deploying open RAN-compliant networks could further the Commission’s policy goals and statutory obligations.
  • The commission will also consider two national security matters and an Enforcement Bureau action. The FCC did not release the details.

Continue Reading

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