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Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers Urges Government To Be A ‘Partner, Not A Competitor’

Calls Broadband Infrastructure ‘Foundational’

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 30, 2017 - Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash), Chair of the House Republican Conference and fourth-ranking House Republican, yesterday called on the government to cooperate with industry when planning investments in the broadband infrastructure.

"My vision is that government would be a partner, not a competitor. Everyone -- Republicans, Democrats, Independents - agrees that we need to address infrastructure. It's foundational. There is a lot of excitement around an infrastructure package," she said.

Rep. McMorris Rodgers' comments came during a Q&A with ACA President and CEO Matthew M. Polka at ACA's 24th Washington, D.C., Summit.

Rep. McMorris Rodgers has deep roots in rural American and first-hand understanding of what it's like to run a small business.

"Broadband is so foundational. A lot of people would like to have the opportunity to live in rural America and operate a business in rural America. Broadband is key to that," she said.

She said that in looking at underserved areas, it's very important that government  have the right priorities.

"There is appropriate oversight and accountability so government isn't putting money in a place that's seen as a competitor, but rather helping provide core infrastructure to those underserved areas," she added.

Rep. McMorris Rodgers also commented on the March 28 vote by the U.S. House of Representatives to overturn the FCC's Internet privacy rules.

"That was Congress saying we disapproved of those FCC rules," she said.

Rep. McMorris Rodgers urged ACA members to establish relationships with U.S. representatives.

"Make sure your representative understands your business, understands your priorities, understands the impacts of regulation, and understands your desire to be innovative. So often, taxes and regulations make it really tough to be innovative and limit your options," she said.

The ACA Summit is a special event where small and mid-sized cable operators serving hometown America connect with the leading lawmakers and regulators as well as media representatives on the communications policy beat in Washington, D.C.  This year's summit coincides with the start of a new Congress and a new President in the White House focused on passing legislation designed to reduce regulatory burdens on communications providers and other businesses.

Please visit the ACA Summit 2017 website by clicking here: ACA Summit.  The event is taking place at the Grand Hyatt, 1000 H Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20001.  This year's Summit is ACA's 24th annual "fly-in" to Washington with its members and, as such, will use the hashtag #Summit24 for all social media about the event.

ACA's more than 750 independent cable operators play a unique role in providing best-in-class communications services to millions of consumers, many living and working in rural areas of the country.  Created in the early 1990s, the ACA Summit gives independent cable operators a vehicle for framing the diverse and complex issues in their own words during dozens of meetings on Capitol Hill and with regulators at the FCC.

About the American Cable Association: Based in Pittsburgh, the American Cable Association is a trade organization representing nearly 750 smaller and medium-sized, independent cable companies who provide broadband services for nearly 7 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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