[CalFiber] Notes from Mar 12 Friday call

Stephen Blum steveblum at tellusventure.com
Tue Mar 16 17:04:46 PDT 2021


The problem with making the Department of Technology the grant making (or
in any way a broadband development) agency is that IT people are consumers
of broadband, not producers. It would be like putting bus drivers in charge
of Caltrans. They'll get the resources they need, because that's what
they're paid to do, but they have no experience in or mandate to provide
services to the public. Last year's so called broadband plan is Exhibit A:
they relied on cable and other lobbyists to write it for them. What we got
was largely useless.

Caltrans or DWR, despite their sins, would be a better choice. They build
public facing infrastructure for a living. But I think the best way is to
make it a purely financial resource, like other bonds, and let financial
people run it ministerially for local policy makers.

Steve Blum
Tellus Venture Associates
U.S. +1-831-582-0700
N.Z. +64-21-116-0002
steveblum at tellusventure.com


On Tue, Mar 16, 2021 at 4:23 PM Ernesto Falcon <ernesto at eff.org> wrote:

> Side note, I wrote this piece summarizing the various broadband pieces
> moving in Sacramento this year
>
>
> https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2021/03/sacramento-might-be-undergoing-broadband-policy-reboot
>
>
>
>    1. Updates from Sacramento (AB 14/SB 4 discussion)
>
>
>
> *The bills are coming closer together and CAC, Sen. Gonzalez, and the
> Governor’s team will have to hash out the final edges of an agreement. Once
> the two bills are essentially merged, support should be given to both
> bills. *
>
>
>
>    1. Updates from DC (House broadband infrastructure package), also
>    related a bipartisan Senate endorsement of a 100/100 mbps standard for
>    broadband (federal definition is 25/3) including Joe Manchin who is often
>    seen as the hardest to pin down Senator on the Democratic side
>    https://www.bennet.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/press-releases?id=2C769043-69ED-426B-B30A-57981A4BA333).
>
>
>
>
> *Legislation will be heading towards the larger infrastructure effort and
> will overlap a lot with the work we’re doing here in Sacramento. Also the
> federal standard will likely be updated this year by Biden’s new FCC Chair,
> there is a lot of pushing for 100/100 low latency as the standard. *
>
>
> * One thing to flag about the way the Democrats are going to approach
> passing a massive infrastructure bill if they receive no GOP support is the
> means to bypass the Senate filibuster prohibits policy, which means this
> might become a giant pot of broadband money given to the Executive branch
> who will decide the standards and goals of the program. *
>
>
>
>    1. Updates on AB 34 (ballot initiative on broadband)
>
>
>
> *This bill still hasn’t been made public but its basically looking like a
> very good bill based on initial feedback. Essentially the state would take
> on $8 billion in debt to finance a grant program that will favor open
> access fiber. Would use the Department of Technology as the grant making
> agency, which is concerning in that they have no experience in that space,
> and likely was an ask from cable who want to avoid having the regulator in
> charge of making these decisions. *
>
>
>
>    1. Anything else?
>
>
>
> *Caballero franchise bill – EFF will have a research memo published soon
> talking about local franchise power for major cities and how it has
> benefited New York City. The same will be true for LA, SF, Oakland and
> other major CA cities. However, concerns were raised about the bargaining
> power of rural townships is much more limited and they probably need the
> state to retain authority over the franchising both from a resources and a
> negotiating power perspective. Sean McLaughlin noted that the CPUC doesn’t
> have clear authority to audit and regulate franchise holders who fail to
> meet the requirements of the license to sell broadband in California. *
>
>
>
> *Line Extension Program – CPUC has been doing some rethinking about it,
> Ernesto suggested seeing if there is room to remake the program to assist
> citizens connect to their own fiber. Chris Mitchell did a long interview on
> this topic
> (https://muninetworks.org/content/expanding-high-speed-internet-access-america-through-fiber-condominiums
> <https://muninetworks.org/content/expanding-high-speed-internet-access-america-through-fiber-condominiums>).
> If there are any changes to the program, it’ll come from the Governor’s
> office into the SB 4 discussion.*
>
>
>
>
>
> --
>
> Ernesto Omar Falcon
>
> Senior Legislative Counsel
>
> Electronic Frontier Foundation
>
> Office: 415 436 9333 ext. 182
>
> Cell: 202 716 0770
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> CalFiber mailing list
> CalFiber at lists.eff.org
> https://lists.eff.org/mailman/listinfo/calfiber
>
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://lists.eff.org/pipermail/calfiber/attachments/20210316/c80d54d7/attachment-0001.html>


More information about the CalFiber mailing list