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In Focus: Fall 2018

By Bill Hegmann, president and CEO

In my spring communication to you, I previewed our new method of distributing Access articles. Our process is now fully operational, and as an Access subscriber you should be receiving email alerts, either weekly or on-publish (your choice) when we release a new feature. I hope you are enjoying our enhanced delivery of timely information. 

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Washington report: dog days of summer bring plenty of activity

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

August in Washington usually means both the Senate and House are in their home states and districts spending time with constituents. While that is true for the House, the Senate remained in Washington for the bulk of the month, ostensibly to get through a logjam of nominations and other work.

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Filed under August 2018, Tagged with Broadband, Congress, FCC, Oversight, USF

In Focus: Spring 2018

By Bill Hegmann, President and CEO

The calendar declares June 21 as the official start of the summer season, but we all know better; it started this week with the Memorial Day holiday. For good things we can’t wait to enjoy, why not start sooner and reap the benefits? More on that later.

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Washington Report: privacy, budgeting and change at the Commission

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

The Washington tech and telecom world is still caught up in the Facebook frenzy that led up to and followed CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony a few weeks back. Not surprisingly, this has ignited significant interest in privacy issues, which will be important to follow moving forward. Of particular interest will be to see if Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s (R-Tenn.) BROWSER Act, which would apply privacy rules to both ISPs as well as edge providers such as Amazon, Facebook and Google, starts to gain traction after sitting in limbo for months.

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In Focus: Winter 2018

By Bill Hegmann, President and CEO

As I write this, the state of our union was addressed recently. I can report with confidence that NECA remains committed fully to helping our members provide to their customers cost effective and superior service. With USF orders that appear favorable to our members currently circulating at the FCC, we will be wholly prepared to assist members with implementation efforts upon release. Our annual tariff election has begun and it is because of this confidence I recommend strongly your continued participation in our tariffs and pools.

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Washington Report: infrastructure and net neutrality

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

Washington has been abuzz with a looming infrastructure plan, broadband funding issues and, as you may have guessed, net neutrality.

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In Focus: Fall 2017

By Bill Hegmann, President and CEO

Around this time one year ago, we were presented with choices, decisions and elections, from selecting someone to occupy the highest office in the land to choosing the appropriate path to receive universal service support. As 2018 approaches, decisions have been made and results became effective, but there is still much for us to contemplate and engage in to keep pace with the resulting changes.

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Washington Report: confirmations, Lifeline and oversight

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

The FCC and the Hill have been busy recently with commission confirmations, Lifeline discussions and efforts to reauthorize the Commission.

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Filed under October 2017, Tagged with Congress, Fall 2017, FCC, Lifeline

In Focus: July 2017

By Bill Hegmann, President and CEO

We have turned the corner on an extremely active first half of 2017. Considering the very engaging FCC Open Meetings with close to double-digit agenda items, and the process of Commission nominations to fill open slots, it appears the accelerated pace will continue. All that recent activity is captured in the Washington Report.

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Washington Report: broadband, nominations and oversight

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

Things have been picking up on the telecom front on Capitol Hill recently. This is probably for a variety of reasons, including: industry pressure and national press attention on issues such as rural broadband and net neutrality; speculation over a possible infrastructure package that may include funding for broadband; President Donald Trump’s nominations to the FCC, including the renomination of Jessica Rosenworcel, which removed some legislative roadblocks; and actions taken by the FCC on hot topics like net neutrality.

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In Focus: April 2017

By Bill Hegmann, President and CEO

Although 2017 is only one third complete, it sure feels we've already packed in activity to fill a full 12 months.

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Washington Report: Congress returns to a full slate

By Bob Deegan, director – Government Relations

Members of Congress have just returned to Washington with the end of the spring recess and both chambers will immediately have to get to work hammering out a budget deal by April 28 to avert a government shutdown, something the GOP is particularly keen on avoiding given its control of the legislature and the White House. Once that is accomplished, Congress and President Trump have made it a priority to tackle tax reform. In fact, Trump just released some details on his proposal, which among other things would cut personal and corporate tax rates. This, of course, is a complex and controversial topic so hopefully it does not take too much air out of the room and prevent progress on an infrastructure package, which is one issue that for the most part has bipartisan support. 

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Filed under April 2017, Tagged with Congress, FCC, Open internet

Washington report: new year, new Congress, new president, new chairman

By Bob Deegan, Director – Government Relations

After the election lull and the lame duck session of Congress, including the stalemate on telecom legislation at the end of 2016 as a result of the dispute over Commissioner Rosenworcel's reconfirmation, it is safe to say a lot has been happening in Washington over the last several weeks.

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Filed under January 2017, Tagged with Broadband, Congress, FCC, Open internet

Washington Report: a flurry of telecom activity before election recess

By Bob Deegan, director - Government Relations

After a few weeks back in D.C. and a surprising amount of telecom activity, Congress is once again on recess until November 13 for a brief lame duck session, during which it will be tight on time to hammer out a new Appropriations bill to fund the government for the 2017 fiscal year.  While the presidential race is receiving the bulk of the attention in Washington these days, there hasn't been too much revealed about the candidates' tech platforms to date other than we can expect a continued focus on universal broadband deployment in a potential Clinton administration.

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Filed under October 2016, Tagged with Congress, FCC


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