As this Dispatch will highlight, the first step is to fund jobs
that support long-term economic competitiveness, notably by investing
in people and physical infrastructure. While the economic climate for
profit-making business opportunities is more limited, investments in
education, health care, transit and energy efficiency can create
immediate jobs while strengthening building blocks for long-term
The FCC has been holding a series of workshops in an effort to collect information that will be useful in the creation of a National BroadbandPlan. On September 1st, state and local telecommunications officialsparticipated in a workshop entitled State and Local Governments: Toolkits and Best Practices,at which the FCC aimed to learn from the experiences of state and localgovernments that have proactively addressed broadband deployment andadoption issues in their communities.
With the passage of HB 1701 the Washington State legislature once again demonstrated its understandingthat when combating the digital divide states must not just addressaccess issues, but must also focus on dealing with the barriers to broadband adoption by individuals.
This Dispatch will outline how funds allocated in the ARRA aim to support broadband initiatives and how states can leverage broadband to create efficiencies, increase opportunities and begin to bridge a major resource divide in our country by implementing progressive broadband initiatives.
AT&T's new cutting-edge television service, U-Verse, is creating frustration for community programming advocates and being investigated by both state and federal officials. After receiving a large number of complaints, Illinois Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan, launched an investigation into the U-Verse system's underminging of access to PEG channels (i.e. Public Education and Government stations).
According to The Wall Street Journal, "Fed and Treasury
officials have identified the disease. It's called de-leveraging, or
the unwinding of debt. During the credit boom, financial institutions
and American households took on too much debt." But let's not buy into a false equivalence of "financial
institutions" and those "American households" borrowing beyond their
Inan increasingly global economy, states struggle to decide which policieswill encourage the growth of high-value local jobs and high-technologyindustries that can compete on the international playing field. Too often,state economic policy reduces to desperate biddingby states to offer tax subsidies to businesses that will relocate to theirstate, a failing strategy that usually accomplishes little other than drainingstate budgets.
Investingin 21st century broadband infrastructure is a far better use ofpublic funds. States cancapitalize on infrastructure build-out through local investments that nurtureexisting firms and local industry startups that, with the right support, canbecome the anchors of long-term economic growth. Technology transfers from localuniversities and community investments can tie together industrial"clusters" of firms that, in turn, can encourage the kind oflong-term, high-value jobs needed in our communities to compete in the globaleconomy. Further, by directing some of those investments to the“domestic emerging markets” of low-income communities and better coordinatingoverall economic development, states can assure that technology investmentsdeliver economic prosperity for everyone.
Core Policies for LocalInvestments for Technology-Based Growth