Cash Flows to Add Broadband, But Feds Don't Have Plan

FCC has until Feb.; ISPs get stimulus now
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2009 12:35 PM CDT
Cash Flows to Add Broadband, But Feds Don't Have Plan
Michael Copps speaks during the annual FCC Breakfast at the National Association of Broadcasters conference in Las Vegas in this 2007 file photo. Copps is currently acting chair of the FCC.   (AP Photo)

The Federal Communications Commission is beginning to draw up a plan to deliver broadband internet to every home in the US, the Washington Post reports. But as the FCC accepts public comment and reviews policy in the year it has to draft the plan, broadband providers will be using stimulus cash to build new infrastructure—without the guidance of a national blueprint.

$7.2 billion is earmarked just for broadband deployment, with the first phase of payouts now under way. “Everyone is questioning the chronology of the mandates in the Recovery Act,” said one telecom policy analyst. But others say the disengagement is a minor inconvenience—providers are likely to spend the first payments on getting service to areas with no service whatsoever. (More broadband internet stories.)

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