Incumbents challenge broadband stimulus requests

Eldo Telecom reports that incumbent providers have filed thousands of challenges to broadband stimulus proposals. It is hard to tell from the USDA/NTIA rules just how the challenges will be handled. The ones I have looked at all pretty much take the line that the area covered in a proposal already has complete or nearly complete coverage. The problem is that the "coverage" being cited as already available is almost entirely copper-based,and many if not most of the proposals involve building much higher performance fiber networks. So the incumbents are saying, "Don't give this project money, we already have "little broadband." And the communities are saying, "We don't want little broadband, we want big broadband." It will be interesting to see how this gets resolved.

USDA/NTIA have a difficult task. Reviewing all these challenges is going to further delay getting the broadband stimulus money out into the economy to create jobs, and if too many funding requests are denied on the basis of "little broadband" incumbent challenges, that also means no job creation and no help for the economy.

Technology News: