Some Maine towns seeking to set up municipal broadband will no longer have to pay a fee to put equipment on utility poles. Gov. Janet Mills (D-ME) recently signed a bill into law to exempt municipalities from such "make-ready fees." Owners will be responsible for expenses needed to make poles ready for municipal efforts to provide broadband service to underserved areas. The law takes effect 90 days after the legislative session ends.
SpaceX has launched 60 little satellites, the first of thousands that founder Elon Musk plans to put in orbit for global internet coverage. Musk said that all 60 flat-panel satellites were deployed and were online a few hundred miles above Earth. Musk says 12 launches of 60 satellites each will provide high-speed internet coverage throughout the US. Twenty-four launches will serve most of the populated world, and 30 launches the entire world. That will be 1,800 satellites in total, with more planned after that.
The internet on the Havasupai reservation (AZ) has been a mixed bag. Tribal employees could sign on to their email and do internet searches but not much else. The tribe began working with a company called MuralNet in 2017 to get teachers and students better access. They successfully sought temporary authority from the Federal Communications Commission to use the Educational Broadband Services (EBS) spectrum that wasn’t being used. “We’re really putting our chips on EBS,” said Mariel Triggs, chief executive of MuralNet. “It works in extreme cases.