FCC’s Rosenworcel Releases New PodcastFCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel announced the release of a new episode of her podcast, Broadband Conversations. The newest episode features NASA Astronaut Kate Rubins. In 2016, Kate spent 115 days in space aboard the International Space Station. She completed two space walks—for a total of almost 13 hours of spacewalk time. She has a doctorate in cancer biology from Stanford University Medical School and was the first person to sequence DNA on space. Listeners will get to hear Kate describe how she became an astronaut, how being “off planet” gave her a new perspective on the world, and what its like working in zero gravity.
Rosenworcel said: “This is one of my favorite episodes. In it, Kate describes how she went from a little girl with a love of stargazing to becoming an astronaut and working on the International Space Station. Listeners will hear Kate talk about her life “off planet,” the new perspective she gained while in space, and what she missed most from Earth. I hope everyone who listens feels inspired to reach for the skies because you may land, like Kate did, among the stars.”
The Regulatory Mix Today: FCC’s Rosenworcel Releases New Podcast, FCC Considering Next Round Of Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Broadband Funding, US House Hearing on Broadband Mapping, US Senate Hearing On Rural Broadband _____________________________________________________________________________________________
FCC Considering Next Round Of Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Broadband Funding
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced he circulated a draft Order to his fellow commissioners that would provide approximately $950 million in funding to storm-harden, improve, and expand broadband networks in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, which were devastated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017. This is the second round of funding under the FCC’s Uniendo a Puerto Rico Fund and Connect USVI Fund and follows $130 million to restore hurricane-damaged networks in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands since 2017. The draft Order will be considered at FCC’s monthly meeting on September 26.
Chairman Pai a statement saying in part: “The FCC took numerous steps to help restore communications in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands following the devastating one-two punches delivered by Hurricanes Irma and Maria. But even as we were responding to immediate needs, we knew that we needed to have a long-term strategy to expand broadband availability in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, improve broadband networks on these islands, and help protect these networks against future storms… Now, this new funding would support deployment of the networks of tomorrow, including gigabit fiber and 5G, in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. It would also help ensure that Americans living there will be able to fully participate in the digital economy and remain connected when they need it most. Our goal is simple: to provide everyone in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands with digital opportunity.”
US House Hearing on Broadband Mapping
House Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-PA) announced that the Communications and Technology Subcommittee will hold a hearing on September 11, 2019 entitled, “Legislating to Connect America: Improving the Nation’s Broadband Maps.” Pallone and Doyle said: “Accurately mapping the availability of broadband internet service across America is essential to promote the deployment of high-speed service to Americans living in unserved and underserved areas. This FCC doesn’t have a clear picture of where broadband is or isn’t available, explaining some of its misguided choices when it comes to broadband policy. Congress must take action to ensure the reliability of our nation’s broadband maps so investments in affordable and high-speed broadband infrastructure can close the broadband gap once and for all.”
US Senate Hearing On Rural Broadband
Senator John Thune, R-S.D., chairman of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, announced the subcommittee will convene a hearing titled “Transforming Rural America: A New Era of Innovation,” on Thursday, September 5, 2019. The hearing will examine the innovations high-speed broadband services bring to rural America in a variety of sectors such as agriculture, education, health care, and small business. The hearing will also explore the need to bring additional reliable broadband connectivity to rural America. Witnesses include:
- The Honorable Brendan Carr, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
- Dr. José-Marie Griffiths, President, Dakota State University
- Ms. Deanna Larson, President, Avera Ecare
- Mr. Mark Shlanta, Chief Executive Officer, SDN Communications
- Mr. Craig Snyder, Chief Executive Officer, VIKOR Teleconstruction
- Dr. Michael Adelaine, Vice President for Technology and Security, South Dakota State University
The Regulatory Mix, Inteserra’s blog of telecom related regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of an Inteserra Briefing.