July 19, 2017

In Commerce Committee Hearing, Senator Hassan Presses FCC Nominees on Importance of Broadband Access for Students, Innovators

Senator Also Highlights Importance of Balanced Spectrum Policy to Support New and Existing Technologies

Click here for video of Senator Hassan’s questioning.

WASHINGTON – Today, during a Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation committee hearing, Senator Maggie Hassan pressed a bipartisan group of Federal Communications Commission (FCC) nominees on the importance of broadband access for students, particularly the E-Rate program and the New Hampshire School Connectivity Initiative that then-Governor Hassan instituted in New Hampshire, providing broadband access to more than 25,000 students in the Granite State.

Senator Hassan asked Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel what her response is to communities that still lack adequate broadband capacity, and if E-Rate will continue to be a top priority for her. Commissioner Rosenworcel affirmed her support for this program stating, “E-Rate is absolutely vital. It is the best tool we have to reach every school and every student in this country with the broadband they need for modern education.” If confirmed, the panel committed to making E-Rate a top priority.

Senator Hassan also pressed the panel on spectrum, the finite resource that powers communications such as broadcast radio, wireless phone service, and Wi-Fi. Senator Hassan highlighted the importance of balanced spectrum policy and avoiding a “spectrum crunch” as we become more and more reliant on wireless service and new technologies.