Today, Public Knowledge joins 17 rural, consumer, community media, tech rights, academic, and civil rights groups in launching Broadband Connects America, a coalition dedicated to ensuring all Americans have access to high-speed broadband.
In Swanton, California, just over 50 miles outside of tech Mecca Silicon Valley, my family can’t get reliable internet. Though affordability remains the number one barrier to internet adoption, we don’t lack connection because of a budget crunch. Instead, we lack access because we live in a rural area and carriers like ours, AT&T, have stopped investing and maintaining internet infrastructure in less populated areas.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve a Report and Order on “one-touch, make-ready wireline infrastructure.” The Order creates a one-touch, make-ready option for simple make-ready work that allows a single crew hired by the new provider to do all of the make-ready work at one time.
Last year, the Federal Communications Commission voted to modernize the Lifeline program for the digital age to help low-income families, veterans, and children gain access to the internet. This week, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is poised to initiate steps to drastically roll back the program, ultimately leaving millions of Lifeline subscribers and eligible families without a service provider.