Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Some Good Broadband News for the U.S.

Last July I wrote about a couple of bills that were before Congress - S. 1492, the Broadband Data Improvement Act and H.R. 3919, the Broadband Census of America Act of 2007. These bills would improve information-gathering about current broadband deployment and assist in targeting resources to areas in need of such services.

A few days ago on September 26, S.1492 passed in the Senate by unanimous consent. Today (September 29), S.1492 passed in the House of Representatives without objection.

S. 1492 was introduced by Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye in May of 2007. The bill would require the FCC to provide users with more accurate information about the cost and capability of their broadband connection, and to better compare the deployment and penetration of broadband in the United States with other countries. It would also encourage private and public partnership efforts that identify barriers to broadband adoption on the state level. Senator Inouye is quoted on the Speed Matters blog:

If the United States is to remain a world leader in technology, we need a national broadband network that is second-to-none. The federal government has a responsibility to ensure the continued roll-out of broadband access, as well as the successful deployment of the next generation of broadband technology. But as I have said before, we cannot manage what we do not measure. This bill will give us the baseline statistics we need in order to eventually achieve the successful deployment of broadband access and services to all Americans.

S.1492 will now move to a joint conference committee to work out the differences between the Senate and House versions.

1 comment:

Drew Clark said...

Gordon,

One could only wish (that it would go to conference)! The reality is that the Senate rolled the House. See our story: "House Defers to Senate Broadband Data Bill; Final Bill Deletes Funding and National Map," at http://broadbandcensus.com/blog/?p=787