Today’s Regulatory Mix: California Announces Historic Broadband Budget Bill, FCC Announces Electronic Filings in the International Bureau Filing System
California Announces Historic Broadband Budget Bill
In May, Governor Gavin. Newsom (D.) released a revised budget proposal that included $7 billion to expand broadband access to underserved communities across the state. On July 12, an agreement with state lawmakers was announced to spend a total of $5.25 billion on broadband expansion in the state.
The legislation includes:
- More vital accountability and legislative oversight.
- Creating a ‘broadband czar’ and nine-member council within the California Department of Technology.
- Hiring a third-party to build and maintain the ‘middle-mile network’ – high-capacity fiber lines that carry large amounts of data at higher speeds over longer distances between local networks.
- Investing $3.25 billion to target that middle mile and build the broadband lines.
- Providing $2 billion for ‘last-mile’ infrastructure lines that will connect consumers’ homes and businesses with local networks ($1 billion for rural communities; $1 billion for urban communities).
According to Governor Newsom, “This broadband package is historic. It transcends politics, and it will be a legacy project that will benefit generations of rural and urban residents alike. This legislation will yield vital, broadened access for California families by prioritizing the unserved and underserved areas, facilities, households, and businesses that remain disconnected in the digital era.”
FCC Announces Electronic Filings in the International Bureau Filing System
The FCC announced that it had adopted an Order that will require the electronic filing of all applications and reports in the International Bureau Filing System (IBFS). These new rules will extend electronic filing requirements to Section 325(c) Applications, Applications for International High Frequency Broadcast (IHF) Stations, and Dominant Carrier Section 63.10(c) Quarterly Reports. The Order also removes a duplicate paper filing requirement for satellite cost-recovery International Telecommunication Union (ITU) declarations. Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel noted, “Today, we update the International Bureau Filing System, or IBFS. It was introduced back in 1998 and at this point most filings are electronic. But some applications and reports still require the filing of a paper copy. We eliminate those rules today and update the IBFS system to support electronic filing of these documents. That means better service at lower cost.”
The Regulatory Mix, Inteserra’s blog of telecom related 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 an Inteserra Briefing.