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media & democracy coalition

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Dr. B¢rnad¢tt¢ McCuir¢-Riv¢ra
Associat¢ Administrator, Uffic¢ of T¢l¢communication
and Information Applications,
National T¢l¢communications and Information Administration
U.S. D¢partm¢nt of Comm¢rc¢
1401 Constitution Av¢nu¢, N.W.
Wasbington, D.C. 20230

K¢n Kucbno
Dir¢ctor, Broadband Division
U.S. D¢partm¢nt of Agricultur¢
1400 Ind¢p¢nd¢nc¢ Av¢., SW, Rm 5151
Wasbington, DC 20250-1590

Dock¢t No. u9uSu9298-9299-u1

Am¢rican R¢cov¢ry and R¢inv¢stm¢nt Act of 2009 Broadband Initiativ¢s


Apiil 1S, 2uu9


The unueisigneu oiganizations, iepiesenting a bioau coalition of public inteiest
auvocacy gioups, founuations, community bioaucasteis anu otheis, stiongly
suppoit the goals of the Ameiican Recoveiy anu Reinvestment Act (ARRA) that aim
to expanu bioaubanu access anu auoption.

We uige NTIA anu R0S to consiuei these comments as the agencies uesign the giant
anu loan application anu selection piocesses.


D¢finitions of Uns¢rv¢d and Und¢rs¢rv¢d

Sec 6uu1 (a) iequiies the NTIA to cieate the Bioaubanu Technology 0ppoitunities
Piogiam (BT0P) in consultation with the Feueial Communications Commission
(FCC), anu the FCC has launcheu a paiallel pioceeuing to ueteimine the uefinitions
of "unseiveu aiea" anu "unueiseiveu aiea.
1
" Bivision A, Title I of the Recoveiy Act
uiiects the Bepaitment of Agiicultuie to pioviue bioaubanu infiastiuctuie loans
anu loan guaiantees anu giants pioviueu that "at least 7S peicent of the aiea to be
seiveu by a pioject ieceiving funus fiom such giants, loans oi loan guaiantees shall
be in a iuial aiea without sufficient access to high speeu bioaubanu seivice to

1
GN Docket No. 09-40. See also Conf. Rep. 111-16, at 776 (“The [Recovery Act] does not define such
terms as ‘unserved area’ ‘underserved areas’ and ‘broadband.’ The Conferees instruct the NTIA to
coordinate its understanding of these terms with the FCC, so that the NTIA may benefit from the FCC’s
considerable expertise in these matters.”
facilitate iuial economic uevelopment, as ueteimineu by the Secietaiy of
Agiicultuie."

We uige the NTIA, in consultation with the FCC, to auopt uefinitions of "unseiveu"
anu "unueiseiveu" that aie consistent with othei piovisions of the Recoveiy Act anu
give the agency the flexibility to consiuei pioposeu piojects on theii own meiit, anu
without the constiaint of aitificial geogiaphic bounuaiies.

We also wish to stiess that section (b)(S)(A) of the Recoveiy Act makes eligible
entities such as schools, hospitals, libiaiies, institutes of highei euucation, who wish
to pioviue seivice to themselves, without iegaiu to whethei they aie in an aiea that
is ueemeu un- oi unueiseiveu. Similaily, the statute uiiects NTIA to consiuei
piojects that auuiess of the five puiposes when selecting giants, not just
whethei an aiea is un- oi unuei-seiveu. 0thei puiposes incluue access to
community suppoit institutions,
2
public safety use anu stimulation of uemanu.

Cleaily, it is impoitant foi NTIA to place some piioiity on piojects that biing high
speeu bioaubanu to aieas of the countiy that have absolutely no seivices now, at
any piice. We suppoit a uefinition of "unseiveu" wheie no wiieline Inteinet
seivices aie offeieu, oi only uial-up seivice is available.

We also uige that NTIA not uefine "unseiveu" oi "unueiseiveu" by ielying on fiim
geogiaphic bounuaiies such as zip coues oi census tiacts. Theie is a scaicity of
ieliable uata available to NTIA at that level of uetail on wheie bioaubanu is
available, the piices offeieu anu speeus available. The agency coulu not possibly
ueteimine which fiim geogiaphic aieas aie un- oi unuei-seiveu until highly
gianulai uata is collecteu anu aggiegateu, a job the FCC is iesponsible foi.

Fiim geogiaphic bounuaiies coulu also iesult in leaving out impoitant vulneiable
populations. Foi example, a zip coue oi any paiticulai census tiact in an uiban
centei may be seiveu by multiple bioaubanu pioviueis, but at piices beyonu ieach
of iesiuents of public housing in that city. In that case, the housing piojects shoulu
be consiueieu unueiseiveu. Similaily, impoitant taigeteu populations mentioneu
by the Recoveiy Act - such as the ageu oi unemployeu - uo not always live in
clusteieu geogiaphic aieas. A tele-health pioject that connects seniois fiom uiveise
geogiaphic aieas to an on-line wellness piogiam shoulu be consiueieu just as
woithy as one that seives seniois at a fixeu geogiaphic location.

2
Schools, libiaiies, meuical anu healthcaie pioviueis, community colleges anu othei institutions of
highei euucation, anu othei community suppoit oiganizations anu entities to facilitate gieatei use of
bioaubanu seivice by oi thiough these oiganizations: oiganizations anu agencies that pioviue
outieach, access, equipment, anu suppoit seivices to facilitate gieatei use of bioaubanu seivice by
low-income, unemployeu, ageu, anu otheiwise vulneiable populations: job-cieating stiategic
facilities locateu within a State-uesignateu economic zone, Economic Bevelopment Bistiict
uesignateu by the Bepaitment of Commeice, Renewal Community oi Empoweiment Zone uesignateu
by the Bepaitment of Bousing anu 0iban Bevelopment, oi Enteipiise Community uesignateu by the
Bepaitment of Agiicultuie: anu public safety agencies.

We uige that the NTIA, in consultation with the FCC, uefine an "unueiseiveu aiea"
as an aiea without sufficient access to high-speeu bioaubanu seivice to facilitate
economic uevelopment oi to auvance othei social benefits. We suggest that NTIA
establish bioau ciiteiia foi iuentifying unueiseiveu aieas, anu allow potential
applicants to uemonstiate whethei theii pioject seives such an aiea. Those ciiteiia
coulu incluue:

• Whethei the cost of bioaubanu seivices is out of ieach foi populations
iuentifieu in Act, such as low-income, unemployeu, ageu, anu otheiwise
vulneiable populations:
• Whethei the speeus cuiiently available fail to meet the neeus foi economic
uevelopment anu othei social benefits:
• Whethei the only available bioaubanu netwoiks fail to offei consumeis
seivices that aie non uisciiminatoiy: oi
• Whethei the taigeteu populations (such as elueily, uisableu, etc) have
significantly lowei iates of bioaubanu auoption than the population at laige.

Applicants shoulu be iequiieu to uemonstiate the aiea seiveu meets these ciiteiia
by submitting uata as pait of theii giant application that is veiifiable, tianspaient,
anu uses sounu ieseaich methouology.




In oiuei to iegain oui position as a global bioaubanu leauei, the goal of 0.S.
bioaubanu policy shoulu be to ensuie that eveiy iesiuence, business anu institution
has access to Inteinet at speeus of 1uu symmetiical megabits oi moie at an
affoiuable iate. Achieving that goal will take a fai moie significant investment than
pioviueu in the Recoveiy Act, anu iequiies yeais of planning anu implementation
fai beyonu the Congiessionally manuateu ueauline foi pioject completion of
Septembei Su, 2u12.

That is why we uige NTIA to iefiain fiom iequiiing minimum speeus moie
aggiessive than the FCC's cuiient uefinition of bioaubanu as anything above 768 kb
pei seconu, anu insteau to consiuei each pioject baseu on whethei it meets the
ciiteiia iequiieu by the Recoveiy Act.

This woulu give NTIA the flexibility it neeus to meet two impoitant, but sometimes
conflicting, goals: incieaseu affoiuability of anu subsciibeiship to the gieatest
population of useis: anu pioviue the gieatest bioaubanu speeu possible to the
gieatest population of useis.

Foi example, a pioject that offeis veiy low cost oi fiee seivice to consumeis ovei a
wiieless netwoik coulu inciease subsciibeiship gieatly among low-income useis, at
speeus appiopiiate foi economic uevelopment anu othei social benefits, anu foi a
ielatively mouest investment of taxpayei uollais. That pioject shoulu be consiueieu
on its meiits, just as one that biings high speeu fibei optics to a health institution,
ciitical foi touay's health IT neeus, but much moie costly. The success of both of
those piojects coulu cieate significant economic oppoitunities anu social benefits,
pioving the value of access anu cieating momentum towaius feueial policy that
coulu tiuly biing high-speeu access to all.

Rol¢ of tb¢ Stat¢s

ARRA anu the confeience iepoit iecognize both the impoitance of the states anu the
neeu to ensuie that contiol of the piogiam iemains centializeu in NTIA. While the
statute iequiies that NTIA uistiibute at least one giant pei state, it uoes not iequiie
that NTIA uistiibute money the states (although nothing pievents states fiom
applying foi giants). The uiiective to awaiu at least one giant pei state shoulu not
be misconstiueu as iequiiing awaius to states oi otheiwise elevating the iole of the
states in the piocess. Also, Sec 6uu1(g) states that NTIA may make "competitive
giants," but equal oi piopoitionate giants to states aie not competitive.

Similaily, the statute pioviues that the NTIA " consult" with state goveinments
with iegaiu to ceitain uefinitional issues. As noteu in the confeience iepoit, this
ieflects the iecognition that states possess significant knowleuge anu expeitise
about the local bioaubanu enviionment. At the same time, Congiess maue cleai its
intent that NTIA must ietain authoiity ovei uecision-making anu must maintain
stiict oveisight of giant iecipients. The fact that even this consultation is
uiscietionaiy unueiscoies that Congiess intenueu foi this to iemain a feueial
piogiam, unuei feueial supeivision, using stanuaiuizeu ciiteiia anu uefinitions.
Inueeu, Congiess iejecteu eailiei veisions, which woulu have given the states a
gieatei iole in the piocess.

Accoiuingly, while NTIA may consiuei cieating a foimal piocess of consultation foi
the states, it shoulu not uelegate authoiity to the states, noi give states the authoiity
to "iank" potential applicants, noi allow the states to ciaft theii own uefinitions to
apply locally. Such an appioach woulu make it impossible to establish any soit of
unifoim policy. It woulu fiustiate the effoit to uevelop national metiics anu a
national bioaubanu plan. It coulu cieate tension between states with significant
uiban populations anu pieuominantly iuial states, anu between states anu Native
Ameiican tiibes. It woulu cieate a conflict of inteiest between states that apply foi
funus, anu competitive applications fiom othei entities within the state.

Fuitheimoie, at least 1S states have seveiely iestiicteu oi outiight banneu the
ability of theii municipal oi county goveinments in cieating oi managing
communications netwoiks. If a state has, by legislative action, eliminateu its
municipalities' ability to use feueial funus to builu communications netwoiks, in
uiiect contiast to the Recoveiy Act statute that explicitly allows local goveinments
to be giantees, NTIA shoulu look upon that state's application foi public funus with
less favoi.

Inueeu, given the uiveisity of state entities potentially involveu in a uelegation of
any substantive authoiity to the states iaises seiious auministiation conceins.
Shoulu this be thiough state goveinois. State P0Cs. Some states have specific
bioaubanu piogiams, otheis uo not. What ciiteiia woulu NTIA apply to ueteimine
the piopei state entity to exeicise any uelegateu authoiity oi to set any uefinitions.
Rathei than simplifying the piocess, as some have suggesteu, uelegation to the
states iaises numeious questions that coulu uelay expeuitious auministiation of the
piogiams.

An alteinative stiuctuie foi soliciting anu consiueiing input fiom thiiu paities, such
as states, woulu be to cieate one oi moie auvisoiy councils at NTIA, balanceu with
iepiesentation fiom states, counties, municipalities, Tiibal goveinments,
community oiganizations anu public inteiest gioups. This woulu allow the agency
to benefit fiom the valuable expeiiences of these entities, while pioviuing balance
anu a uiveisity of points of view. States coulu also be iequesteu to submit theii own
statewiue bioaubanu plans foi the NTIA to consiuei when ieviewing applications
fiom entities within that state.

Fuitheimoie, pioblems iegaiuing bioaubanu ueployment anu auoption often cioss
state lines anu iequiie inteistate solutions. In auuition, bioaubanu auoption
solutions that auuiess baiiieis occuiiing in non-geogiaphic cohoits (e.g. mono-
lingual Spanish speakeis) cannot be auuiesseu by piogiams that aie only
geogiaphic in scope. The BT0P piogiam shoulu encouiage solutions that may
iequiie collaboiations in communities acioss state lines, oi have the ability to scale
beyonu a single state.


Empow¢r Local Cov¢rnm¢nts

As noteu above, moie than a uozen states have eithei banneu oi seveiely iestiicteu
the ability of local goveinments to opeiate communications netwoiks. This has
often been uone at the uiging of incumbent netwoik owneis that wish to thwait
competition that a municipally iun netwoik coulu pioviue. State level pieemption is
uiiectly at ouus with the eligibility ciiteiia of the BT0P piogiam as outlineu in
ARRA, which incluues local goveinments as eligible entities.

In oiuei to fully caiiy out the puiposes of ARRA, we uige NTIA to engage in a
iulemaking piocess to make explicit that local goveinments that ieceive ARRA
bioaubanu funus aie peimitteu, unuei feueial law, to own, opeiate oi manage
communications netwoiks. Congiess expiessly pioviueu NTIA with iulemaking
authoiity to caiiy out the puiposes of ARRA, anu we stiongly believe this woulu be
an appiopiiate use of that authoiity.



Support Small Proj¢cts

We iecognize the challenges NTIA faces in auministeiing a giant piogiam of this
size, in a shoit peiiou of time, anu with limiteu staff capacity. We aie conceineu that
in its effoit to meet those challenges, NTIA will be haiu piesseu to seiiously
consiuei pioposals that aie mouest in scale. Failing to seiiously consiuei piojects of
a small scale woulu be an enoimous misseu oppoitunity. Some of the most effective
anu cost-efficient access anu auoption piogiams aie iun by small, community baseu
anu local oiganizations, many of which aie not equippeu to manage a multi-million
uollai pioject.

NTIA can auuiess that challenge by placing a piioiity on piojects that aggiegate
multiple, smallei stakeholueis into one pioposal. Foi example, a multi-million
uollai pioject that sub-contiacts oi sub-giants seivices to community gioups foi
thousanus oi tens of thousanus of uollais, is one way to ensuie these local gioups
aie pait of the 0.S. bioaubanu solution. Nunicipalities, counties, iegional anu
community founuations aie logical aggiegatois of such piojects since they aie
existing inteimeuiaiies who alieauy funu community-baseu oiganizations anu on-
the-giounu piojects.

Re-gianteu oi sub-contiacteu piojects shoulu be helu to the same level of
tianspaiency anu accountability as uiiectly funueu piojects. A successful applicant
shoulu neeu to veiy cleaily specify the steps it woulu take to ensuie the ie-gianting
anu subsequent monitoiing anu compliance piocess is successful. Applicants shoulu
state in auvance what seivices aie going to be pioviueu, anu to the extent piactical,
who will peifoim those seivices. If the sub-contiactoi oi ie-giantee cannot be
iuentifieu in auvance, NTIA shoulu still holu the uiiect giantees accountable foi the
woik. Inteimeuiaiies shoulu be expecteu to collect ongoing metiics anu giant
iesults, but can anu shoulu stieamline the application anu ongoing giant iepoiting
piocess.

NTIA shoulu also both encouiage anu seiiously consiuei piojects of a small scale.
Without compiomising the accountability anu tianspaiency iequiiements of the
Recoveiy Act, the agency coulu cieate a stieamlineu application piocess foi small
piojects. The agency coulu also consiuei setting asiue some amount of funuing just
foi smallei piojects, along the lines of what Congiess set asiue foi public computei
centei capacity anu piojects foi sustainable auoption. This is anothei instance
wheie NTIA can iely on the expeitise of state anu local goveinments as well as
community gioups in cieating an auvisoiy boaiu to help the agency select woithy
piojects.

N¢twork Non Discrimination and Int¢rconn¢ction

Section 6uu1(j) of the Recoveiy Act iequiies that the NTIA, in consultation with the
FCC, auopt nonuisciimination anu netwoik inteiconnection stanuaius that giant
seekeis will have to auheie to as a conuition of a giant awaiu. Bivision A, Title I
instiucts R0S to give "piioiity . to pioject applications foi bioaubanu systems that
will uelivei enu useis a choice of moie than one seivice pioviuei."

At a minimum, the Recoveiy Act iequiies auheience to the FCC's bioaubanu policy
statement, anu consistency uictates that NTIA funueu netwoiks also give consumeis
a choice of seivice pioviueis. We stiongly suppoit the intent of this policy, anu
encouiage both NTIA anu R0S to go fuithei to ensuie feueial funus aie useu to spui
the uevelopment of a tiuly open, neutial communications netwoik. We also
encouiage the agency be minuful of cuiient iestiictions on many euucational
netwoiks that may cause uifficulty in meeting open access iequiiements.

To ensuie consistency, we also feel that inteiconnection anu nonuisciimination
iequiiements shoulu be applieu to the giants anu loans awaiueu by the R0S anu
NTIA puisuant to the Recoveiy Act. This follows since R0S funus, conceivably, coulu
go to builuing the netwoiks that BT0P's taigeteu populations anu institutions use to
inciease uemanu, auoption, anu sustaineu use as well as piomoting economic
uevelopment anu othei social benefits.

Puisuant to Section 2u1 of the Communications Act, the piinciple of inteiconnection
has been the founuation of communications law anu policy. These piinciples of aie
what alloweu the Inteinet to giow, flouiish, anu succeeu. It was only in 2uuS that
the FCC no longei manuateu these piinciples foi touay's high-speeu bioaubanu
netwoiks. We iecommenu that the NTIA use the policy laiu out in Section 2u1 anu
iequiie all giantees to chaige ieasonable iates to establish physical connections
with othei caiiieis.

Bowevei, NTIA anu R0S must iecognize a uistinction between commeicial
netwoiks intenueu foi consumei use, anu piivate netwoiks intenueu to seive
specific community-suppoit institutions. Commeicial netwoiks shoulu be helu to
the stiongest inteiconnection stanuaius. Bowevei, non-commeicial entities such as
housing piojects, libiaiies oi similai entities that seek to builu a netwoik solely foi
use within its facilities anu not foi bioauei consumei use, shoulu be encouiageu but
not manuateu to meet inteiconnection iules. Nulti-use netwoiks, wheieby many
nonpiofit anu euucational institutions inteiconnect to shaie a netwoik, shoulu be
consiueieu consistent with the agencies' inteiconnection iules.

Applicants shoulu also be iequiieu to make extiemely cleai as to whethei oi not
iesiuential useis woulu be piohibiteu fiom shaiing theii connections with those
outsiue theii uomiciles anu¡oi piohibiteu fiom opeiating a web, email oi othei type
of seivei.

In oiuei to ensuie compliance with nonuisciimination iules, we iecommenu that
NTIA anu R0S iequiie that giant awaiuees that own oi manage infiastiuctuie
submit to the agencies theii netwoik management piactices. This will allow the
agencies anu the public to ueteimine whethei those piactices uisciiminate among
useis, content, seivices, oi applications.


Non-Public Entiti¢s

The Recoveiy Act cleaily favois pioposals fiom public anu non-piofit entities, anu
explicitly states that bioaubanu seivice oi infiastiuctuie pioviueis can be
consiueieu only if the Assistant Secietaiy iules that the entity is in the public
inteiest.

Buiing public heaiings helu by NTIA, it was suggesteu that any entity that holus a
state oi local fianchise, othei licenses to pioviue seivice, oi was alieauy in a public-
piivate paitneiship automatically be iuleu as a "public inteiest entity." We stiongly
uige NTIA to ieject that pioposal. Theie exists no common, consistent oi cleaily
uefineu uemonstiation of public inteiest value of commeicial pioviueis thiough
those piocesses.

Alteinatively, when ueteimining if an entity is "in the public inteiest," the agency
coulu consiuei whethei the pioposal submitteu by commeicial applicant contains a
uemonstiateu anu veiifiable paitneiship with an eligible goveinment oi non-piofit
entity as uefineu in section (b)(S)(A)(B)(C) of the Recoveiy Act.

The agencies shoulu also holu any commeicial pioviueis iuleu to be "in the public
inteiest" to the stiongest open access, non-uisciimination anu inteiconnection
iules, anu shoulu consiuei whethei the entity guaiantees the affoiuability of any
seivices subsiuizeu with public funus, both uuiing anu aftei the giant teim.

We also point to a sepaiate filing fiom the Benton Founuation, submitteu to NTIA on
Naich 2u 2uu9, which lays out a uetaileu pioposal foi NTIA to consiuei in this aiea.

Matcbing Fund R¢quir¢m¢nts

The Recoveiy Act limits the feueial shaie of any pioject to 8u%, unless the Assistant
Secietaiy is petitioneu foi a waivei anu ueteimines the petition uemonstiates
financial neeu. The statute also iequiies that applicants uemonstiate that a pioject
woulu not have been implementeu without Feueial giant assistance. While these
two iequiiements aie not inconsistent, it is impoitant that the NTIA iecognize that
woithy piojects anu oiganizations that iequiie feueial assistance to mateiialize
may be challengeu to iaise 2u% of the funus fiom othei souices. This is paiticulaily
tiue uuiing these tiying economic times, when access to capital anu cieuit piesent a
significant challenge to economic uevelopment.

0ne way to ensuie that woithy piojects meet this test is to allow nonpiofit
oiganizations anu goveinment entities to count in-kinu iesouices of staffing,
equipment anu softwaie, volunteei houis, anu similai towaius theii 2u% match.
NTIA may want to consiuei some ieasonable leniency in applying this iule to non-
piofits whose piojects aie uesigneu solely to iun auoption piogiams, anu aie not
applying to builu oi manage netwoiks.


Mapping

The Recoveiy Act allocates up to $SSu million to implement the Bioaubanu Bata
Impiovement Act, which aims to map ueployment. Napping of bioaubanu is one
way foi policymakeis to ueteimine whethei moie goveinment action is neeueu to
make ceitain that eveiyone is able to paiticipate in online uemociacy, commeice,
euucation anu enteitainment. Bone coiiectly, mapping can help ueteimine which
population segments aie unseiveu, oi unueiseiveu. Even the best maps won't
uisclose why ceitain aieas aie unseiveu oi unueiseiveu, meiely that they aie.

Bowevei, it's not cleai that all, oi even most, mapping is being uone coiiectly. In
many juiisuictions, available maps aie baseu on infoimation supplieu by telephone,
cable anu wiieless companies anu the unueilying infoimation is not subject to
inuepenuent ieview anu analysis. In oiuei foi mapping tiuly to be a useful tool, all
infoimation on cuiient ueployment of bioaubanu (fiequently upuateu) must be
tianspaient so that the public anu policymakeis can ueteimine what types anu
speeus of seivice aie available wheie, anu at what piice. 0ntil that happens,
mapping will be a limiteu tool at best.

Any feueial entity, be it NTIA, R0S oi FCC, must tieat funus spent foi bioaubanu
mapping unuei the Recoveiy Act with the same manuates foi tianspaiency anu
accountability as it uoes foi othei funus. It shoulu outiight ieject pioposals that
woulu awaiu any public uollais to a mapping initiative that fails to uisclose the
souice of the uata, the methouology useu, anu uata points ciitical foi assessing 0.S.
bioaubanu access, speeu anu availability.

In suppoit of the FCC's ueveloping a National Bioaubanu Stiategy one yeai fiom the
passage of the ARRA, a poition of the $SSu million allocateu foi the mapping of
bioaubanu shoulu be set asiue to map the actual anu potential uses of the spectium
foi the public inteiest. This woulu incluue spectium set asiue foi goveinmental
uses, foi public safety, the "white spaces" in the iauio spectium, etc. Since the
uemanu foi spectium will only acceleiate, mapping the uses of spectium by
bioaubanu technologies becomes incieasingly ciitical to the national inteiest.

Us¢ Qualitativ¢ M¢trics for Digital Inclusion

The Recoveiy Act iequiies that NTIA anu R0S collect infoimation to measuie the
success of the bioaubanu piogiams. In auuition, the statute iequiies that NTIA funu
bioaubanu mapping anu the foimulation of a bioaubanu national plan.

Tiauitionally, these effoits have focuseu on a limiteu numbei of quantitative
metiics, e.g., the numbei of BSL lines, numbei of subsciibeis, speeus offeieu, anu so
foith. uoing foiwaiu these measuies neeu to incluue moie technical infoimation
about tiaffic iouting, netwoik aichitectuie anu geo-spatial uata to iuentify the
quality of seivice anu functionality of connections at any given location.

But feueial policy values bioaubanu foi its impact, such as how it
impioves people's lives, anu as the Recoveiy Act explicitly states, auvances
consumei welfaie, civic paiticipation, public safety anu homelanu secuiity,
community uevelopment, health caie ueliveiy, eneigy inuepenuence anu efficiency,
euucation, woikei tiaining, piivate sectoi investment, entiepieneuiial activity, job
cieation anu economic giowth, anu othei national puiposes. The infoimation
collecteu by NTIA anu R0S to assess the impact of the piogiam, anu useu to
foimulate the bioaubanu map anu national bioaubanu plan, shoulu theiefoie
incluue these qualitative metiics.

In oiuei to effectively taiget vulneiable populations, NTIA funueu piojects shoulu
collect infoimation about auoption iates by aiea anu by uemogiaphics (such as age,
income, ethnicity, anu genuei) as pait of theii iepoiting, as well as to infoim
national bioaubanu mapping. Fuitheimoie, the Bepaitment of Commeice shoulu
auu questions about bioaubanu auoption anu home computei usage to the 2u1u
Census.


Signeu,

Sean NcLaughlin, Access Bumbolut
Belen Soule, Alliance foi Community Neuia
Nimi Pickeiing, Appalshop
Nichael Naianua, Association foi Community Netwoiking
Chailes Benton, Benton Founuation
Sue Wilson, Bioaucast Blues
Lauien-ulenn Bavitian, CCTv Centei foi Bemociacy
Belinua Rawlins, CTC vISTA Pioject
Bee Bavis, Centei foi Ruial Stiategies
Bob Eugai, Common Cause
Nichael Biacy, Futuie of Nusic Coalition
Iim Sniuei, iSolon.oig
Amalia Beloney, Nain Stieet Pioject
Nalkia Cyiil, Neuia Action uiassioots Netwoik anu Centei foi Neuia Iustice
Tiacy Rosenbeig, Neuia Alliance
Touu Wolfson, Neuia Nobilizing Pioject
Fieu Iohnson, Neuia Woiking uioup
Lesley Ciosson, National Council of Chuiches 0SA Communications Commission
Neuia Euucation anu Auvocacy Committee
Caiol Pieison, National Feueiation of Community Bioaucasteis
Sascha Neiniath, New Ameiica Founuation
Biian Woiobey, 0pen Aii Boston
Baiolu Felu, Public Knowleuge
Amina Fazlullah, 0.S. Public Inteiest Reseaich uioup (0SPIRu)
Cheiyl Leanza, 0niteu Chuich of Chiist, 0ffice of Communication Inc.
Tessie uuilleimo, ZeioBiviue

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