December 3, 2020
Contact: Jon Conradi
Letter to Hill Appropriators Highlights Need for Accurate Data to Better Guide Public and Private Investments to Close the Broadband Gap
Washington, D.C. – Connect Americans Now (CAN) sent a letter Thursday to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House Committees on Appropriation and the leaders of the relevant subcommittees encouraging lawmakers to swiftly and fully fund implementation of broadband mapping solutions at the first available opportunity.
“Connect Americans Now (CAN) writes to respectfully encourage Congress to swiftly and fully fund implementation of the Broadband DATA Act to allow for urgently needed improvements to the nation’s broadband mapping data,” the letter, from CAN executive director Richard T. Cullen states. “These improvements, which will help accurately measure the full scale and location of the digital divide in America, are essential to guiding public and private investments to close the broadband gap.”
“CAN has been a strong proponent of more precise broadband maps to better direct public and private investments in broadband and enthusiastically supported the bipartisan Broadband DATA Act, which Congress passed, and President Trump signed into law earlier this year,” the letter continues. “The passage of this important legislation demonstrated the commitment of lawmakers, in both parties, to working collaboratively to address the digital divide that leaves millions of Americans without access to broadband internet.”
“Now, Congress must finish the job by providing the resources needed for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to begin implementation of this important solution at the first available opportunity,” the letter notes. “Without funding for implementation, the FCC cannot begin the critical work of producing new, accurate maps.”
“For the millions of Americans who lack access to a broadband connection, the pandemic has exacerbated the many challenges associated with the digital divide,” the letter says. “Congress must act to eliminate the digital divide for these Americans. The swift and full funding of improved broadband maps will be an important first step.”
Read the full letter HERE.
Read more on Connect Americans Now HERE.