An Important Bipartisan Milestone for Spectrum Policy

Congratulations to Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Rockefeller and Ranking Member Hutchison for their leadership today in passing signature spectrum legislation through Committee that will serve as the foundation for the next chapter in America’s wireless broadband revolution.

It advances a signature policy priority for President Obama who challenged us to out-innovate our global competitors through a National Wireless Initiative.

It also moves forward on the recently released House Republican Technology Working Group’s agenda which pledged to "expand availability of spectrum for both consumers and public safety;" and important hearings by the House Energy and Commerce Committee where Members of the Committee, on a bipartisan basis, offered to work together towards legislation that meets the Nation's wireless broadband needs.

This action couldn’t come soon enough. Cisco recently projected that the "[t]raffic from wireless devices will exceed traffic from wired devices by 2015."

Better yet, the Senate legislation makes good on a promise our Nation made to first responders following 9/11 that they would have the tools they need to keep our families safe, including a nationwide interoperable public safety broadband network; it strengthens our competitiveness through investments in wireless R&D so the next generation of mobile broadband is invented here; and equips the Federal government with tools to utilize spectrum more effectively. And did I mention that it reduces the deficit?

Throughout my visits this year on behalf of Startup America – from Austin to Omaha, I’ve heard consistently that mobile broadband is critical to economic growth and quality jobs.

As we approach the 10-year anniversary of 9/11, I’m hopeful the President will have the opportunity to sign historic spectrum legislation, as it would deliver on one of the most important policies to “win the future” noted in his Strategy for American Innovation and would constitute a long overdue commitment to our first responders.

Aneesh Chopra is US Chief Technology Officer

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