December 1, 2020
Contact: Jon Conradi
Coalition Encourages Next FCC Leader to Protect and Build on Positive Progress
Washington, D.C. – Connect Americans Now (CAN) executive director Richard T. Cullen reacted Tuesday to an announcement from Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai on Monday that he will step down from the position in January.
“Chairman Pai brought tremendous dedication and leadership to the task of eliminating the digital divide and CAN applauds his record of positive progress to expand broadband connectivity for all Americans,” Cullen said. “Under Chairman Pai, the FCC has taken a number of commendable steps to address the broadband gap, including by: Maximizing spectrum resources and clearing regulatory barriers to innovative solutions like TV white space (TVWS); Advancing the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) to direct $20.4 billion over ten years to finance broadband network deployment in unserved areas; Implementing targeted programs established by Congress to address known challenges like access to telehealth through the Connected Care Pilot and COVID-19 Telehealth Program; and Protecting Americans’ connectivity during the pandemic by issuing the Keep Americans Connected Pledge.”
“The Commission must protect and build on this positive progress in order to completely and swiftly eliminate the digital divide for every American,” Cullen continued. “The next chairman must share a commitment to maximizing spectrum resources, including licensed and unlicensed applications, clearing regulatory barriers to innovation, fixing the nation’s mapping data on the digital divide and working with Congress to administer cost-effective and rapid funding for broadband deployment.”
CAN is a coalition of more than 275 leading organizations and companies representing voices for agriculture, health care, education, small business, technology, veterans, rural advocacy and more – committed to completely and swiftly eliminating the digital divide in America by supporting a mixed-technology approach that leverages the full potential of every tool at the nation’s disposal.
Read more on CAN’s mission and coalition HERE.