The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

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

Free Press Responds to First Public Meeting on Broadband Stimulus


Today, the three federal agencies charged with overseeing $7.2
billion in broadband stimulus funds -- the National Telecommunications
and Information Administration (NTIA), the Department of Agriculture
and the Federal Communications Commission -- held their first joint
public meeting on the grants funded by the American Reinvestment and
Recovery Act.

Free Press recently released Putting the Angels in the Details: A
Roadmap for Broadband Stimulus Success, a set of specific
recommendations for the public interest priorities, policies and
procedures that should guide the broadband grantmaking process.

S. Derek Turner, research director of Free Press and author of the report, issued the following statement:

"We are greatly encouraged by the spirit of cooperation, dedication
to public input and commitment to a data-driven process. These agencies
are asking the right questions -- and the public will see the biggest
bang for the buck once they determine the best path for delivering a
high-quality network to the largest number of areas at affordable

"Huge swaths of the country -- rural and urban -- will contain a mix
of unserved and underserved households and businesses. We encourage the
agencies to tackle the immediate problems of unserved areas and
last-mile networks, but also to focus on critical questions of
underserved areas, low-income communities and middle-mile
infrastructure. And to maximize the public benefit, these agencies must
ensure that the broadband programs adhere to principles of
affordability, speed and openness."

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

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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