The Regulatory Mix, TMI’s daily blog of regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of a TMI Regulatory Bulletin.
Next Century Cities, a city-to-city collaborative of 100 mayors who support fast, affordable, and reliable Internet, has released a policy agenda to guide the deployment of next-generation broadband Internet. “Connecting 21st Century Communities: A Policy Agenda for Broadband Stakeholders” provides concrete policies and actions for local, state, and federal governments, as well as community members and philanthropic organizations, that will support the development of high-quality broadband networks throughout the country. According to Deb Socia, Executive Director of Next Century Cities, “[t]his new policy agenda from Next Century Cities is designed to give communities across the country a guide for how leaders from all levels of government, as well as other stakeholders, can work together to make tangible progress in creating the broadband infrastructure needed today.”
The policy agenda recommends a number of policy steps that can be taken by allies at all levels of government and others to move broadband forward. Examples detailed in the policy agenda include:
- Local Government can lay the groundwork through the development of policies (like joint use/dig once) and by streamlining the permitting process. In addition, cities can begin to address the need for fast, affordable, reliable Internet in the same way they approach other infrastructure projects, including it in the budget and creating a long range plan.
- State Government can play a critical role in assisting community-led efforts through funding initiatives, elevating the issue, building middle mile connections, and modernizing state-level regulations that set barriers.
- Federal Government can protect market competition, act as a bulwark against state barriers, fill funding gaps, and continue to elevate and strengthen the issue nationwide.
In the Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) proceeding, the PSC directed the DPS Staff to develop and issue a Benefit-Cost Analysis White Paper describing a framework for considering utility proposals within the REV proceeding. On July 1, 2015, Staff submitted its White Paper, which presents a proposed benefit-cost analysis framework and proposed guidance on key parameters included in that framework. The White Paper begins by explaining the need for the development of a BCA framework within the REV proceeding. It then discusses how the BCA framework will be employed by the utilities in implementing REV programs and policies. The White Paper next lists proposed components of the framework and provides suggested guidance on calculating the values of those components. The framework proposed is intended to address the marginal costs and benefits of Distributed Energy Resources versus traditional utility investments and expenditures to be proposed in near term Distributed System Implementation Plans and tariff development. Click here for more information on New York’s REV proceeding, including a link to the Staff Whitepaper.