What an opportunity!

In the never ending battle to spark high speed Internet deployment in the United States a new piece of legislation has been introduced. Senate Bill (S. 1147) that was introduced by Senators John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.V.) and Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) provides for companies that deploy broadband infrastructure to expense 50 percent of their investments on current-generation technology and 100 percent on next-generation technology. Here is the exact text of the proposed legislation for anyone who would like to examine it closely.

The overall impact of this bill is probably not easily comprehensible at first glance. Yes, this does motivate ISP/WISPs to deploy equipment but in a significantly more subtle way it provides substantial incentive for broadband providers to roll out Next Generation infrastructure. This, of course, has an upward spiraling effect as it puts pressure on manufacturers to develop realistic equipment that would meet whatever definition this bill outlines “Next Generation” to be. Another added benefit that this piece of legislation brings to the table is the effect it will have on the investment community.

This legislation is near brilliant, in my opinion as it manages to accomplish several necessary things while avoiding the pitfalls of doling out grant monies with questionable results.

There is one slight problem (and this is where you come in) – this is proposed legislation – not law.

This is something you need to know. In this one case it doesn’t matter whether you are a huge ILEC, a large ISP, a WISP or simply someone who wants to see affordable broadband everywhere in the US, the benefit to us all is equal. Since the cost of hardware would be reduced for the infrastructure providers, the cost to the end user would also come down, we would like to think. In short, if you are reading this, you should be enthusiastically supporting this bill. I mean it, you need to let your legislators know that this bill in a real Win/Win situation for everyone.

In an attempt to make your interaction a little easier, I am providing this link to assist anyone who needs the direct contact information for their Senator.

One thing you should be aware of, any action you take is not wasted. For every single letter, email, fax or telephone call you make the interpretation is that there are many more people that support the same viewpoint but did not take the time to voice their opinions. This IS a numbers game and the action you take will have a far greater effect than casting one vote.

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