members

Task Force on Broadband Expansion

Broadband networks and services drive the national and state economies. Ubiquitous deployment can only raise standards of living and bring major advances in education, healthcare, teleworking, e-commerce, public safety and security. State and federal policymakers have to find ways to assure that networks are promptly and efficiently deployed. There are many tools that can be brought to bear, including State and Federal Tax incentives, Grants, Universal Service subsidy programs, other targeted spending programs, and providing access to lower cost capitol. But it is impossible to accurately target any of these mechanisms without an accurate map indicating unserved and underserved areas that need assistance. Another possibility is to leverage the infrastructure of other utilities. At the national level, the FCC is currently considering how to make the national broadband maps more accurate and granular. In the current environment, there is still much that can be done. This task force will work to identify: 1. How some States have successfully shifted state universal service funds from telephone and op ex support to broadband buildout capital support and any lessons learned that other states could utilize; 2. What other state programs are successfully building out broadband, how are they funded, and how are they structured; 3. How NARUC and NARUC members can best work with the FCC to help craft Universal Service Fund programs that will be most successful at expanding broadband into unserved areas; 4. Electric and gas utilities who have successfully leveraged their infrastructure to provide broadband service, including lessons learned from considering any regulatory hurdles, project funding mechanisms, the relative financial success for the utility, how (or should) State commissions incentivize such projects, and whether the overall approach can be replicated elsewhere. 5. Information related to the impacts of rural broadband deployment on economic development, education, healthcare, quality of life, the delivery of public utilities services and its ultimate benefits to customers.

Chris Nelson photo

Chris Nelson
(Chairman)
Vice Chairman
South Dakota Public Utilities Commission     
chris.nelson@state.sd.us
Biography


Crystal Rhoades photo

Crystal Rhoades
(Vice Chair)
Commissioner
Nebraska Public Service Commission     
crystal.rhoades@nebraska.gov
Biography


Karen Charles Peterson photo

Karen Charles Peterson
Commissioner
Massachusetts Department of Telecommunications and Cable     
karen.c.peterson@mass.gov
Biography


Maida J. Coleman photo

Maida J. Coleman
Commissioner
Missouri Public Service Commission     
maida.coleman@psc.mo.gov
Biography


Todd Hiett photo

Todd Hiett
Chairman
Oklahoma Corporation Commission     
todd.hiett@occ.ok.gov
Biography


Sarah Hofmann photo

Sarah Hofmann
Commissioner
Vermont Public Utility Commission     
sarah.hofmann@vermont.gov
Biography


Charlotte R. Lane photo

Charlotte R. Lane
Chairman
Public Service Commission of West Virginia     
clane@psc.state.wv.us


Talina R. Mathews photo

Talina R. Mathews
Commissioner
Kentucky Public Service Commission     
talina.mathews@ky.gov
Biography


Lea Marquez Peterson photo

Lea Marquez Peterson
Commissioner
Arizona Corporation Commission     
lmarquezpeterson@azcc.gov


Tremaine L. Phillips photo

Tremaine L. Phillips
Commissioner
Michigan Public Service Commission     
PhillipsT8@michigan.gov


Sherry Lichtenberg Ph.D. photo

Sherry Lichtenberg Ph.D.
(Observer)
Deputy Director
National Regulatory Research Institute     
slichtenberg@nrri.org


James Bradford Ramsay photo

James Bradford Ramsay
(Observer)
General Counsel
National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners     
jramsay@naruc.org
Biography