This has been a busy week for rural broadband. So far the FCC has announced plans for $500 million in new spending on rural broadband, and now the House has announced four new bills to promote its development.
The following are short synopses of the bills:
Inventory of Assets for Communications Facilities Act of 2018: Sponsored by Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), “requires the General Services Administration (GSA) to coordinate with the National Telecommunications Information Administration (NTIA) to ensure federal agencies include an inventory of assets that can be used to attach or install broadband infrastructure.”
Streamlining and Expediting Approval for Communications Technologies Act: Sponsored by Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), the bill “would require the Senior Real Property Officer of covered agencies to track, record, and report on specified data on the applications to locate or modify communications facilities on covered, federal assets.”
Communications Facilities Deployment on Federal Property Act of 2018: Sponsored by Rep. Mimi Walters (R-Calif.), the bill would “require executive agencies to use common application forms and cost-based application fees for easements, rights-of-way, and lease requests, and master contracts for placement of communications facility installations on federal property” to the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act.
Broadband Conduit Deployment Act of 2018: Sponsored by Rep David McKinley (R-W Va.) and Rep Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), the bill would force broadband conduits that hold fiber optic cables to be included in construction of any road project getting federal funding. This would speed up the roll out of internet to more rural areas by already having the fiber in place.
Source: MultiChannel News
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