The "working recommendations" report is really more of a slideshow that goes on for 56 pages, but it identifies several areas that the FCC thinks can use the "innovative force of broadband": healthcare, education, energy and the environment, government, public safety and homeland security, job training, and small businesses.
The plan also proposes the use of federal buildings as anchors for broadband services.
Missing so far are the competitive aspects of the plan, or some hard numbers such as those that FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski recently offered with the so-called "100 Squared" initiative, which looks to deliver 100-Mbit/s services to 100 million households as part of a grander "2020 vision" for broadband. (See FCC Chair Sets 2020 Broadband Vision .)
Among the changes, ex parte filings must describe in more detail what happened during meetings between third parties and the Commission, going as far as providing access to any presentations or reference materials used during those hook-ups.
Presentations? Like what? This recent filing by Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) related to the FCC's request on how it can help with video device "innovation" offers a good example -- it attaches a seven-page slideshow that covers the FiOS TV infrastructure.
Seattle Mayor McGinn said the city will "actively seek to partner with Google," which plans to put experimental fiber-fed networks in front of as many as 500,000 homes.
Google told The Seattle Times that more than a dozen cities have already applied to join the fiber fun.
He also replayed the original NCTA position that the experiment doesn't pose much of a threat to cable, questioning whether Google will follow through on anything for the long term, pointing specifically at Google's decision not to bid on 700MHz spectrum.
The full interview with McSlarrow is available here.
The USDA announced Wednesday that it is doling out $277 million to fund 11 more projects. The NTIA awarded $357 million more to help fund 10 other broadband projects.
And cable even got a little taste of the USDA batch. Allen's TV Cable Service Inc. got a $3.5 million loan and a $3.5 million grant to fund a fiber-to-the-premises extension in three South Louisiana parishes.
Also this week, both government agencies opened up the second filing window for broadband project applications.
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable