Members of the House Energy and Committee’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee were in agreement about the need for the Federal government to make available more broadband service to the country’s underserved areas and areas that are unserved altogether.
There are a variety of bills being considered by the committee to address the need. Some of the ones being discussed are:
The AIRWAVES Act that would require the FCC to complete wireless spectrum auctions in 2020, would grant priority access to broadcast licenses for specified bands, and identify spectrum that may be used for non-Federal unlicensed use and commercial licensed use, and use ten percent of auction proceeds to expand wireless broadband infrastructure in rural areas.
The Leading Infrastructure for Tomorrow’s America Act that would establish 40 billion dollars appropriations for secure broadband access, with a prioritization on expanding broadband access in underserved areas.
The ACCESS BROADBAND Act that would direct the Department of Commerce to establish an office of Internet connectivity and growth within NTIA that which would undertake a range of activities to promote further broadband service rollout.
The Precision Agriculture Connectivity Act that would require the FCC to create the Task Force for Meeting Connectivity and Technology Needs of Precision Agriculture in the United States. The group would identify and measure current gaps in broadband coverage of underserved area and promote the “rapid, expanded deportment of fixed and mobile broadband internet access service” for those underserved areas.