Title IV, Section 6001(k) of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 requires the FCC to submit a national broadband plan that seeks to “ensure that all people of the United States have access to broadband capability.” Specifically, the Commission is required to establish “a plan for use of broadband infrastructure and services in advancing … community development … worker training, private sector investment, entrepreneurial activity, job creation and economic growth…” What are the lessons from local and state government officials toward meeting these specific national purposes? What is the potential role of local officials representing un-served or under-served communities in the national broadband plan?
The following are some of the preliminary topics that will be covered at this workshop. If you would like to discuss any other topics, please send us your suggestions
- Is there a role in the national broadband plan for local governments to help make sure underserved communities are connected to advanced telecommunications infrastructure and to increase broadband adoption rates?
- How can the Universal Service Fund and the BTOP and BIP programs better address the needs of underserved communities and non-adopters? Are there special considerations that should be taken into account regarding minority, multilingual and immigrant communities?
- How can broadband deployment address the workforce needs of communities experiencing high unemployment?
- Should the national broadband plan provide recommendations to elected officials representing underserved communities and non-adopters?
9:30 am Workshop/Panel Introduction, Mark Lloyd, Moderator
9:35 am Panelist Presentations
- Calvin Smyre, President of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, Georgia State Representative
- Robert Steele, Commissioner, 2nd District of Cook County (Chicago), IL
- Vanessa R. Williams, Executive Director of the National Conference of Black Mayors (NCBM)
- Gus K. West, Board Chair and President, The Hispanic Institute
10:30 am Panelist Discussion and Responses to Questions
11:30 am Closing Statements, Moderator