Excerpt from a letter sent by members of the Congressional Black Caucus to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler:
Thank you for your continuing efforts to improve broadband access for all American and to promote competitive broadband markets. We are writing to share our concerns about the FCC’s May 2 Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) on Business Data Services (BDS). Millions of consumers depend daily on BDS when they use their smartphone, visit a major retailer, withdraw cash from an ATM machine, or start their workday online. It is an essential service for all communities that rely on a broadband connection to support their business and stay connected. Moreover, the impact on investment to broadband and increased consumer access to technological advancement, including telemedicine and educational opportunities, speak to the need for the Commission to further promote infrastructure investment and not impose obstacles that stifle broadband deployment and adoption in the communities we represent.
As the Commission completes its rulemaking on business data services, we hope the new rules will encourage economic development, more jobs, and additional opportunities in the communities we represent, including for small businesses and minority-owned contractors who often do business with BDS providers. A successful policy would encourage multiple BDS providers to compete with each other through real investment in their networks, bringing new services to places they had not previously reached and increasing high-speed data capacity to the businesses that need it for continued expansion.