Last updated: April 14, 2009 - 8:52am
In comments to the Federal Communications Commission on the FCC's consulting role in the broadband stimulus grant program, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association reiterated that the money should be focused on areas that currently do not have broadband service and if there is money left over after unserved areas are taken care of, the grant and loan money should go toward improving the adoption rate in underserved areas to make use of the broadband already available--computer training or subsidies, for example. And third, if there is any of the $7.2 billion in grant money left over, enhance broadband facilities in underserved areas, defined as lacking current-generation broadband. NCTA also argues that the nondiscrimination conditions Congress stipulated be put on the grants be confined to the FCC's existing four principles. Cable operators don't want the government to subsidize competitors, or to set a broadband speed threshhold that will classify areas already served by current-generation broadband as underserved.