Gov performance

Investment in Broadband Infrastructure Can Create Cost Savings and Community Self-Empowerment

Building new broadband infrastructure is a big investment for any municipality. While the cost of that investment shouldn’t be overlooked, it’s equally important to consider the significant cost savings that can be reaped with publicly owned infrastructure. Many cities have slashed the cost of connecting their schools to broadband by opting to build their own infrastructure, instead of continuing to pay a private provider for connections. Portland (OR), for example, had been paying an incumbent provider $1,310 per month for  10 Mbps connections to schools.

How an Investigation of Fake FCC Comments Snared a Prominent DC Media Firm

Millions of records that the Federal Communications Commission’s top lawyer once fought to hold back from state law enforcement officials now serve as key evidence in a year-long probe into cases of Americans being impersonated during the agency’s latest net neutrality proceeding.

FCC's Inspector General Looks Into Changes That Benefited Sinclair

In April 2017, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Ajit Pai, led the charge for his agency to approve rules allowing television broadcasters to greatly increase the number of stations they own.

Senators Call for Impartial Investigation into Potential Quid Pro Quo between Chairman Ajit Pai, Trump Administration, and Sinclair Broadcasting

Sens Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Tom Udall (D-NM), and 13 of their Senate colleagues are requesting the inspector general of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) open an investigation into the objectivity and impartiality of the FCC’s review of the proposed merger of Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Media.

FCC Should Enhance Performance Goals and Measures for Its Program to Support Broadband Service in High-Cost Areas

The Federal Communications Commission has a program, known as the high-cost program, to promote broadband deployment in unserved areas. Although the performance goals for the high-cost program reflect principles in the Telecommunications Act of 1996, not all of the goals are expressed in a measurable or quantifiable manner and therefore do not align with leading practices.

Democracy activists stranded after Trump administration pulls funding for anti-censorship tools

The Trump administration has undercut democracy activists in Belarus and Hong Kong by abruptly ending funding to a US internet freedom organization that provides technological tools to evade censorship and surveillance, according to cyber experts and lawmakers.

Court rules Trump appointee overstepped authority when he tried to replace media fund’s leadership

Superior Court Judge Shana Frost Matini ruled that Michael Pack overstepped his authority when he fired the board of an agency that helps dissidents and journalists in repressive countries and sought to replace it with his own slate of directors, including himself.

FCC, USAID to Collaborate on International 5G Deployment and Security

The Federal Communications Commission signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the US Agency for International Development to promote secure and open 5G networks in the developing world. Under the agreement, the FCC and USAID will promote open, interoperable, reliable, and secure Internet and digital infrastructure and advance interagency coordination on network security in developing countries. The agreement affirms the following goals and objectives:

FCC Should Take Action to Better Manage Persistent Fraud Risks in the Schools and Libraries Program

In 2017, the Federal Communications Commission’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) reported that FCC’s ability to deter and detect alleged Erate program fraud has been severely limited since the program’s inception due to a lack of certain controls. Also, as recently as February 2020, a number of E-rate program participants pled guilty to defrauding the program by billing for equipment and services that were not provided, and obtaining more than $2.6 million in program funds to which they were not entitled. GAO was asked to review fraud risk management in the E-rate program.