BroadbandUSA Newsletter July 2018

Sun, July 01, 2018

Volume 3 | Issue 7 | July2018

Download PDF Version

To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email

Connectivity in America and the Regional Rural Development Centers

This month, the BroadbandUSA webinar will focus on Statewide Strategies for Rural Digital Inclusion. The webinar will feature the work of one of the major stakeholders in the Regional Rural Development Centers (RRDC). The RRDC provides economic and community development data, decision tools, education, and guidance for the nation’s rural communities. The organization coordinates four regional centers: Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development, hosted by Pennsylvania State University; North Central Regional Center for Rural Development, hosted by Michigan State University; Southern Rural Development Center, hosted by Mississippi State University and Western Rural Development Center, hosted by Utah State University.

Currently, the Southern Rural Development Center is leading a national team of Cooperative Extension Service (CES) professionals to develop and refine materials to support communities, which include:

  • Awareness of Relevance – raising awareness in communities about the benefits of broadband to encourage them to consider strategies to gain or improve access;

  • Access & Availability – working to help a community gain or increase access to broadband;

  • Adoption – helping people/businesses/government within areas that recently acquired broadband access to understand and take steps to access the service;

  • Utilization – taking people/businesses/government from access to the initial stages of usage;

  • Policy – work on local, state or national policy that influences broadband adoption; and

  • Evaluation – Gauging success, charting next steps, and documenting/sharing lessons learned are also essential to efficiently achieving the goal of e-Connectivity in rural America.

Strategies for success will be explored in our July 18, 2018 webinar.

Broadband News and Updates

Federal News

State News

Broadband Data and Mapping

Public Safety/FirstNet


Smart Community and 5G News

General News

BroadbandUSA Spotlight

New Data Show Substantial Gains and Evolution in Internet Use

The digital divide is showing signs of giving way as more Americans from all walks of life connect to the Internet. Several historically disadvantaged groups showed significant increases in online adoption, according to initial results from NTIA’s most recent survey on Internet use conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau. The survey, which was conducted in November 2017, reveals new contours of Americans’ Internet use. In 2017, more households had a mobile data plan than wired broadband service. Additionally, for the first time since NTIA began tracking use of different types of computing devices, tablets were more popular than desktop computers among Americans, and the number of people who used multiple types of devices also increased substantially.
See complete story here.


NTIA Events

July 18, 2018
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series: Statewide Strategies for Rural Digital Inclusion
This month, the BroadbandUSA webinar will focus on statewide strategies to promote broadband adoption and use in rural communities. Speakers will highlight the role of state governments, libraries and university extension programs in planning and executing these strategies. The speakers will also discuss the role of broadband adoption in rural economic and workforce development, as well as approaches to facilitate broadband use and improve digital skills.


  • Rachel Welborn, Associate Director, Southern Rural Development Center

  • Amy Huffman, Research and Policy Specialist, The Broadband Infrastructure Office, North Carolina Department of Information Technology

  • Susan McVey, Director, Oklahoma Department of Libraries

  • Moderator: Emy Tseng, Senior Program Specialist, BroadbandUSA, NTIA

Register here

Events of Interest

July 13 – 16, 2018
National Association of Counties (NACo) 83rd Annual Conference & Exposition, Nashville, TN
The NACo Annual Conference & Exposition is the only meeting that draws a cross section of elected officials and county staff from across the country. BroadbandUSA Speakers: Laura Spining and Katherine Bates

July 23 – 24, 2018
Making Connections: Regional Broadband Summit and City-Vendor Connect, Pittsburgh, PA
Next Century Cities' regional broadband summit is a two-day event that will bring together broadband champions, community leaders, and policy experts from federal, state, and local government to discuss today's most pressing issues in broadband deployment. BroadbandUSA Speaker: Don Williams

August 27, 2018
National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (NATOA) 38th Annual Local Government Conference, Philadelphia, PA. Pre-conference Workshop: "Smart Communities Pre-Conference Workshop: How Smart are You?" BroadbandUSA Speaker: Jean Rice

October 8 - 12, 2018
Connecting Indigenous Communities, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. This community-led forum will showcase success stories of Indigenous community networks in Canada, the United States and around the globe to help find solutions to improve Internet access for all. We’ll explore themes including community development and sustainability in a two-day series of panels, presentations and discussions.

October 30, 2018
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Talent Forward 2018, Washington, DC
The U.S. Chamber Foundation's national workforce conference, Talent Forward 2018, welcomes leaders and change makers in the business and education communities, industry and human resource partners, and other community leaders to discuss the most critical topic in our country today: our workforce.

Policy Corner

On June 13, David J. Redl, Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. Here is an excerpt:

The Internet was made in America, and our ideas, companies, and policies have helped cement our leadership and turn the Internet into one of the greatest engines for communications and commerce that the world has ever known. Similarly, we raced out to global leadership in 4G wireless as the Internet experience went mobile in a big way. During the profound changes of the past three decades, America has been the center of innovation. You can trace that directly to the government putting its trust in the private sector and establishing the light-touch regulatory framework that has governed the Internet since its founding. But if we are going to continue to lead for the next 30 years, government is going to have to work hand-in-hand with willing private sector partners.

As head of NTIA, I continue to look to create as many avenues for meaningful engagement with the private sector as I can. The communications and information sectors are the backbone of the economy, and they are too important not to get right. The United States must continue to lead as 5G and other new technologies emerge, and we must harness this growth for American businesses and American workers.

See the complete testimony here.


Want to access past Practical Broadband Conversations webinars? Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.