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Category: Advocacy

A Key Step Forward On Completing Calls To Rural America

A Key Step Forward On Completing Calls To Rural America

It has been years in the making and hundreds of visits, calls, sharing of horror stories, workshops required of large carriers and prodding of policymakers but at 4:45 am this morning, the United States House of Representatives passed the last hurdle and formally voted through S.96, the Improving Rural Call Quality and Reliability Act, a key tool in the toolkit to prevent least-cost routers from dropping calls to rural America.  The legislation passed the House and the Senate in 2017…

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Officially SXSW Cool?

Officially SXSW Cool?

Ok, maybe I still have yet to become a charter member of the “cool kids” club, but I did score an invitation to speak on a panel at SXSW in Austin in March.  That is at least a baby step into coolness, right? I was really excited to have Chris Woods, Executive Director of the LGBT Technology Partnership & Institute reach out to ask me to be on a panel that he would be moderating at this international platform for…

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Sharing the Rural Broadband Story with the House Energy and Commerce Committee

Sharing the Rural Broadband Story with the House Energy and Commerce Committee

With a pending weather report calling for snow (and let’s be honest, the mere threat of snow tends to turn DC into a tizzy), I made sure that this morning was an early-rising adventure with the opportunity to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology on the agenda mid-morning. While the advanced planning on the travel front ended up being unnecessary, the opportunity to share some thoughts on rural broadband deployment – the challenges with…

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Exciting News as the FCC Releases a Proposal to Promote Rural Broadband Deployment

Exciting News as the FCC Releases a Proposal to Promote Rural Broadband Deployment

Today was a fabulous way to start the second week of the new year with the heads up that a draft order, recon order and notice of proposed rulemaking is now circulating among the FCC commissioners to address Universal Service Fund shortfalls and would address in part NTCA’s petition for reconsideration on sufficiency issues. This action is extremely critical and timely given that the high-cost Universal Service Fund (USF) is foundational to any effort to promote and sustain rural broadband…

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Exciting Day for Rural Prosperity in Nashville

Exciting Day for Rural Prosperity in Nashville

I had a wonderful opportunity to travel to Nashville today to join with a number of our Rebuild Rural coalition allies in hearing directly from the President about his objectives for rural prosperity in the wake of a report presented to him by a task force chaired by Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue.  We are deeply grateful to the President, the Secretary, and the many leaders and staffers throughout this administration for their commitment to rural America, and the recommendations captured…

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Is NTCA Fighting 24/7 for USF Funding? You Bet!

Is NTCA Fighting 24/7 for USF Funding? You Bet!

I had a very active, engaged and proactive member contact me today on an industry issue and in the course of the exchange, asked if NTCA is doing anything in regards to high cost USF support for both cost-based members as well as our ACAM companies – and while it made me a little sad that we have yet to find the “magic bullet” of communications to show all of our members what we have been up to on the…

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A Day At USDA

A Day At USDA

Today I had the pleasure of meeting with USDA to talk about infrastructure plans for 2018. Check out my short vlog to see what we discussed. Our terrific, media savvy team has encouraged me to do more vblogs but I clearly have a comfort zone of my own which includes showing more of the USDA headquarters building than my face as well as finding a quiet spot to do this….however, I still had pre-holiday DC tourists basically looking at me…

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USF Budget….Always Top of Mind

USF Budget….Always Top of Mind

As we hit the season where we give ourselves more time and space to think about what we are grateful for, I continue to be grateful to be working for a group of companies who care so passionately about providing the best service possible to the broadband customers they serve in rural America.  To that end, Mike and I made one more visit to the FCC prior to the holiday break (or in other words, the best time to be…

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Taking One For The Team

Taking One For The Team

Mike Romano, our SVP for Policy and Business Development had the opportunity to testify before a House Judiciary subcommittee yesterday alongside the 2 sitting Federal Trade Commission commissioners and former FCC commissioner Rob McDowell on Net Neutrality.  It was a great platform to underscore the continuing importance of interconnection oversight for rural carriers and consumers even as the FCC moves to take away the heavy-handed retail regulatory aspects of the net neutrality regime. Mike made the most of the opportunity to…

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White House and Rural Prosperity Council Talk Rural Infrastructure

White House and Rural Prosperity Council Talk Rural Infrastructure

Tax reform might be taking up whatever oxygen is actually left on Capitol Hill but today Brian Ford and I headed over to the White House for a meeting on rural infrastructure.    Traffic was light so we made it there with more than enough time to spare so after I dragged Brian for a White House selfie and coo’ed over the security dogs as we made our way through the official visitor’s entrance, that still left plenty of time to…

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