The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Timothy Karr: 201-533-8838,,

Pickering, Free Press and OIC to Discuss Broadband Stimulus Programs


Today, former Rep. Chip Pickering (R-Miss.) will join Free Press and
the Open Internet Coalition on a national conference call to outline
ways to implement model broadband stimulus programs that promote the
public interest and guide future technology policy. The three federal
agencies charged with overseeing $7.2 billion in broadband funds will
hold their first joint public meeting tomorrow to discuss these

DATE: Monday, March 9
TIME: 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT
Former Rep. Chip Pickering
Ben Scott, Free Press
Markham Erickson, Open Internet Coalition

*** To join the conference call, dial (888) 792-8352, passcode 89510171 or FREE PRESS ***

The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, signed into law last
month by President Barack Obama, allocates $4.7 billion to the National
Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) for broadband
adoption and deployment in "unserved," "underserved" and low-income
communities; $2.5 billion to the Department of Agriculture's Rural
Utilities Service (RUS) for rural broadband; and directs the Federal
Communications Commission to develop a national broadband strategy.

The NTIA, RUS and FCC are expected to hold several public meetings
as the agencies work to establish robust broadband grant programs.
Today's call will focus on the priorities, policies and procedures that
should direct the grantmaking process.

Read Fress Press' Putting the Angels in the Details: A Roadmap for Broadband Stimulus Success:

Broadband meeting agenda:

Free Press was created to give people a voice in the crucial decisions that shape our media. We believe that positive social change, racial justice and meaningful engagement in public life require equitable access to technology, diverse and independent ownership of media platforms, and journalism that holds leaders accountable and tells people what's actually happening in their communities.

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