As part of its effort to gather information for the development of a National Broadband Plan, the FCC will hold a public hearing today in Charleston at Trident Community College, Palmer Campus on Columbus Street(9am-12pm).
The first black woman to serve on the Federal Communications Commission, Mignon Clyburn, the daughter of US House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, was only sworn in a few months ago. Clyburn will be present for the Charleston hearing.
She’s the first FCC Commissioner from South Carolina. The FCC has been criticized for not putting more importance on consumer interests. Clyburn says she will work to change that.
Clyburn served on the South Carolina Public Service Commission for 11 years.
FCC Commissioner Michael Copps will also be present for the hearing, as well as representatives of several groups and companies including Charleston Digital Corridor, Aerolina Wireless and Chimera Wireless. The FCC held a forum in Ravenel Monday night.
The FCC is convening a series of hearings this fall to promote open dialogue about the National Broadband Plan.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 directed the FCC to submit a plan to Congress by February, 2010 that addresses broadband deployment, adoption, affordability, and the use of broadband to advance solutions to national priorities, including health care, education, energy, public safety, job creation, investment, and others.
Senator Lindsey Graham says Clyburn is helping to create the infrastructure to put the Internet in all areas of South Carolina and across the country, in libraries and schools, where technology will bring in change.
But he says it’s a challenge. “Poor neighborhoods were the last to get power. We’re not going to make that mistake twice. We’re going to make sure that people who need broadband Internet services get it first, not last. And that’s part of the FCC’s goal.”