PITTSBURGH, March 29, 2011 - The American Cable Association today announced that the upcoming ACA Summit in Washington, D.C., will include a panel of top government officials playing a major role in shaping the country's broadband deployment and adoption policies, including mapping the country's broadband availability, overseeing the government's existing grant and loan programs for broadband deployment, modernizing the Universal Service Fund to support broadband, and making more spectrum available for wireless broadband.
"We're honored to have such a distinguished lineup of high-ranking government officials to participate on a panel dedicated to broadband deployment and adoption, perhaps the single most important communications issue of the decade and one that impacts all segments of the communications industry, particularly small cable operators," ACA President and CEO Matthew M. Polka said.
"The panel will touch upon all the big issues, including some not so obvious, such as how retransmission consent and other programming fees impact the ability of smaller operators to deploy broadband."
Senior officials from the Federal Communications Commission, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration in the U.S. Department of Commerce and tht Rural Utilities Service in the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be on hand to discuss their policy goals for the remainder of the year and likely beyond. They will be joined by a member of the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, who is a also member of the Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service. The panel is scheduled for April 12 at 9 a.m.
This year's ACA Summit lineup of high-profile government experts includes:
"The ACA Summit is a venue for debate and discussion, which is why we have put together a government panel with unmatched knowledge of the policy process in which independent cable operators and their customers have so much at stake," ACA's Polka added. "ACA members appreciate every chance they get to deliver their message from hometown America to the people in charge of the communications policy agenda."
The panel will be moderated by attorney Thomas W. Cohen, who is a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Kelley Drye & Warren LLP. His practice focuses on matters involving communications, including telecommunications, wireless and media, the Internet, privacy and government relations.
The 18th ACA Summit will take place April 11-13 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel on Capitol Hill, a premier industry event for smaller, independent and competitive cable operators to exchange public policy views with high-ranking federal and state regulators as well as key players from Capitol Hill. Members of the print and electronic media will cover the event.
As previously announced, FCC Commissioner Mignon L. Clyburn will deliver the ACA Summit's FCC Keynote address on Tuesday, April 12, at 10:30 a.m. House Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden (R-Or.) will provide the Congressional Keynote Address the following day at 8 a.m. ACA has nearly a dozen members in Rep. Walden's Second District.
Hundreds of ACA members are planning to attend this year's ACA Summit in support of their message that good policymaking ensures that rural companies serving high-cost areas are treated fairly in the marketplace and not overburdened by regulations, so they may continue to supply affordable communications services to their communities. For more, please visit: ACA Summit.org
About the American Cable Association
Based in Pittsburgh, the American Cable Association is a trade organization representing nearly 900 smaller and medium-sized, independent cable companies who provide broadband services for more than 7.6 million cable subscribers primarily located in rural and smaller suburban markets across America. Through active participation in the regulatory and legislative process in Washington, D.C., ACA's members work together to advance the interests of their customers and ensure the future competitiveness and viability of their business. For more information, visit http://www.americancable.org/
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