The Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday (July 20) issued its latest periodic progress report required by Congress to assess whether advanced telecommunications services are being deployed in a "reasonable and timely" fashion. For the first time since the initial report in 1999, the commission found (by a vote of 3-2) that broadband services are not being deployed in such a way. The following statement should be attributed to Kathleen Grillo, Verizon senior vice president for federal regulatory affairs:
"It makes no sense that, after the National Broadband Plan concluded that 95 percent of Americans have access to wireline broadband, the FCC majority now suggests broadband deployment is not reasonable and timely. The report's conclusion is hard to understand, given America's extraordinary progress in deploying broadband, fueled by hundreds of billions of dollars in private investment.
"Of course, we still have work to do to ensure that broadband reaches the remaining 5 percent of American households. Verizon has and will continue to support comprehensive reform of the universal service program and other policies to help achieve that important goal. But we hope that the FCC's finding is not used as a justification to roll back the bipartisan, pro-investment policies that have brought broadband to 290 million Americans."