NTCA Meets with Obama-Biden FCC Transition Team

Urges Continues Investment in Universal Service to Enhance Broadband Deployment  

Arlington, Va., December 16, 2008 -NTCA Vice President Legal & Industry Affairs Dan Mitchell and Vice President Government Affairs Tom Wacker today met with officials from the Obama-Biden FCC Transition Team to educate them about the unique circumstances of small rural communications providers and illustrate the role our members can play in enhancing broadband deployment, which President-elect Obama has made a priority of his new administration.


NTCA told the transition team that it supports efforts to improve America's broadband infrastructure which will subsequently improve the nation's economic competitiveness.  NTCA believes this economic stimulation can be accomplished via investment of additional universal service support dollars to build and maintain broadband networks-particularly in rural areas.
To meet consumers' growing demand for affordable, high-quality communications services, it is critical that telecom policy enable cost recovery and allow for a reasonable return on investment, which will ensure future investment in rural communities is not stifled. 
Because the ability to offer a quality video product is viewed as a key driver of rural broadband deployment, NTCA also pointed to its efforts to reform video policy to enhance competition, diversity and affordability in the retail video programming market. NTCA explained that successful video deployment is contingent on rural carriers having access to technology and the ability to acquire desirable content on reasonable terms and conditions.
NTCA told the transition team that rural carriers are doing their part to deliver high-speed broadband using cost-effective technologies, and will encourage the transition team to review NTCA's proposed intercarrier compensation and universal service reform measures which if adopted will bring high quality affordable broadband to all rural Americans.

Access the one-page summary NTCA has provided the transition team and view the FCC comments on IC/USF reform and video programming NTCA referenced at today's meeting.


The National Telecommunications Cooperative Association is the premier association representing more than 580 locally owned and controlled telecommunications cooperatives and commercial companies throughout rural and small-town America.  NTCA provides its members with legislative, regulatory and industry representation; meetings; publications and educational programs; and an array of employee benefit programs.  Visit us at www.ntca.org.Contact Caitlin Colligan at703-351-2086