Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Coalition calls on next U.S. administration to adopt broadband expansion strategy

Two weeks after the National Association of Telecommunications Officers & Advisors (NATOA) declared the U.S. is at a crisis point on the future of its telecommunications infrastructure, another organization is calling for the next administration to make broadband access an "early and high-level priority."

As with the NATOA, the nternet Innovation Alliance (IIA) advcocates a national broadband strategy it says should be comprised of a "coherent set of policies and goals to accelerate universal adoption of high speed Internet." The IIA calls on the next administration to provide investment incentives and encourage public-private partnerships to expand broadband infrastructure and availability.

We are at a critical moment in our nations history, said Bruce Mehlman, co-chair of the IIA, which describes itself as a broad-based coalition of business and non-profit organizations. To compete and win in the 21st century, we must ensure the United States capitalizes on the extraordinary economic, technological and societal opportunities presented by broadband. The benefits are undeniable and compelling.

Ironically, one of IIA's members is AT&T, whose failure to invest in upgrading its infrastructure, particularly over the last mile to homes and businesses, is a major cause of the pathetic state of U.S. broadband access.

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