Powell Applauds Eshoo's 'Dig Once' Bill

Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) wants any federal highway
construction to include laying fiber-optic cable conduits (plastic pipes) as a
matter of policy, a move the National Cable & Telecommunications
Association saluted Tuesday.

"We applaud Rep. Eshoo for introduction of the Broadband
Conduit Deployment Act of 2011
which will facilitate the further deployment of broadband service throughout
the U.S.." said NCTA President Michael Powell in his first official
statement atop the association.

Eshoo said the 'dig once' policy would be a "creative
approach" to the FCC's July 2010 conclusion that broadband was not being
deployed "in a reasonable and timely" manner. Cable operators
have registered some disagreement on that point, but Powell said the group
is all for creative solutions for getting even more broadband to consumers.
"We look forward to working with the Rep. Eshoo and other policymakers on
creative solutions to lower the cost of broadband deployment so that every
American can benefit from this important service," he said. 

Powell is the former honorary co-chair of the Broadband
Industry Alliance, whose goal was finding marketplace solutions to broadband
deployment and adoption.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.