Sending Office: Honorable Jared Huffman
CLOSING TOMORROW AT NOON
Current Signers: Reps. Huffman, Pocan, Nolan, Ellison, Bustos, Cicilline, Blumenauer, Khanna, Polis, Sanford Bishop, DeSaulnier, Hanabusa, Conyers, Thompson, Grijalva, Slaughter, Eshoo, McGovern, Tonko, Welch, Moulton, Pingree, Lewis, McCollum,
Supported by Public Knowledge and Communications Workers America
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai recently demonstrated the FCC’s intention to lower the minimum standard for acceptable broadband speeds.
Please join us in signing the below letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai opposing any effort to lower broadband Internet standards for millions of Americans, a move that would immediately result in reduced connection reliability and Internet speeds for rural,
tribal, and low-income communities in every state.
In a recent Notice of Inquiry (NOI), the FCC took steps to reduce advanced broadband standards from 25 Mbps download / 3 Mbps upload to a mere 10 Mbps download / 1 Mbps upload. Moreover, the Commission is contemplating finding that Internet access on a cellphone
at such speeds is sufficient and comparable to fixed broadband at home. Any student seeking to complete a report for school or rural resident hoping to take advantage of advances in telehealth is well aware that mobile broadband, particularly in rural areas,
is not yet a viable replacement to a fixed connection at home.
The policy changes contemplated in this NOI would run counter to the intent of Congress by attempting to fulfill the FCC’s statutory obligation to support high-quality telecommunications access for all Americans through definitional changes, rather than concrete
action to connect more Americans online. Simply moving the goalposts is not a real solution, and weakening the definition of high-speed Internet is a disservice to the communities the FCC has an obligation to serve.
Billions of dollars in annual, Federal investment are allocated as a result of the FCC definitions under review. Congress must act now to maintain the highest connectivity standards and ensure these funds continue to support genuine high-quality telecommunications
capability for all Americans.
To sign onto the letter or for any questions, please contact Scott Rasmussen (Rep. Huffman) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jared Huffman Mark Pocan Rick Nolan Keith Ellison
Member of Congress Member of Congress Member of Congress Member of Congress
The Honorable Ajit Pai
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW
Washington, D.C. 20554
Dear Chairman Pai:
We write in response to the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC’s) request for comment in the recent Notice of Inquiry (NOI) “Concerning Deployment of Advanced Telecommunications Capability to All Americans in a Reasonable and Timely Fashion” (GN Docket
No. 17-199). We are gravely concerned that the policies contemplated by this NOI could undo significant progress and investment by the FCC and Congress to ensure that all Americans have access to reliable, high-speed broadband. Specifically, we strongly oppose
any proposal to lower speeds from the current standard of 25 Mbps download/3 Mbps upload to 10 Mbps download/1 Mbps or to find mobile broadband as a universally appropriate replacement for fixed, home broadband.
As you well know, reliable, high-speed broadband is essential to economic development, public safety, and a vibrant quality of life. Ensuring every home, school, and business has adequate access to the Internet is essential to unlocking the innovative potential
of all Americans. However, as the annual section 706 broadband report demonstrates, our nation’s rural and tribal communities continue to lag behind urban America and much of the developed world when it comes to broadband access, speed, and reliability. As
the FCC has noted, thirty-nine percent of rural America and forty-one percent of those on Tribal land lack access to advanced broadband.
The FCC has a statutory obligation to take steps to deploy broadband that supports high-quality telecommunications capability to all Americans in a reasonable and timely manner. The policy changes contemplated by this NOI would run counter to the intent
of Congress by attempting to fulfill that statutory obligation through definitional changes, rather than concrete action to connect more Americans online. Simply moving the goalposts is not a policy solution, and weakening the definition of high speed internet
is a disservice to the rural and tribal communities the FCC has an obligation to serve.
In particular, we are concerned with any effort to weaken the FCC’s current policy finding that every American should have access to broadband services with speeds of at least 25 Mbps download/3 Mbps upload. Finding instead that only mobile service of 10
Mbps download/1 Mbps upload is sufficient would result in significantly slower and less reliable Internet access for millions of Americans, particularly those with low incomes or those living in rural and tribal communities. At this time, mobile access at
10 Mbps download/1 Mbps upload is not a reasonable replacement for fixed advanced broadband at home. This fact is well known to any child seeking to complete a homework assignment, small business owner hoping to develop an Internet presence, or individual
completing an online job application or communicating with their doctor.
We strongly urge you to maintain the highest connectivity standards, which are critical to the FCC’s statutory obligation to support high-quality telecommunications capability to all Americans.
Thank you for your consideration of these comments.
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0