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The WasteWatcher: The Staff Blog of Citizens Against Government Waste

Broadband

A Government-Owned 5G Network Would Be a Massive Boondoggle

Despite mounting evidence to the contrary and President Trump’s announcement that he opposes nationalization of 5G, this idea keeps resurfacing.  And like many other concepts emanating from the Beltway Bandits, this one would be costly and disastrous.  It should be buried and not resurrected.

USVI Should Avoid Repeating Municipal Broadband Failures

A U.S. Virgin Islands’ (USVI) public utility company is positioning itself to create a municipal broadband network that could come at the expense of hundreds of millions of duplicative taxpayer dollars under the guise of recovery from hurricanes Irma and Maria.

FCC Chair Says T-Mobile Sprint Merger Good for Rural Americans

On May 20, 2019, T-Mobile US, Inc. and Sprint Corporation filed documents with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which demonstrated the companies’ commitment to serving rural Americans should their merger be approved.  These commitments were quickly followed by announcements from FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and Commissioner Brendan Carr that with these additional commitments and the divesture of T-Mobile’s Boost Prepaid plan, they believe the merger to be in the public interest.

Congress Rushes to Pass Government Funding Package

The $333 billion spending package that Congress has cobbled together to avoid the threat of a partial government shutdown contains lots of giveaways that go beyond keeping the government’s lights on.

19 Things States Should Not Do In 2019

Governors and legislators new and old taking office this month will be inundated with advice from all directions.  Each special interest and left-wing or right-wing single-issue activist group will have scheduled meetings between its highest-paid lobbyists and the most important legislators; prepared its talking points and social media campaigns; and made its first campaign contributions of 2019.  The state’s education association, hospital association, largest employers, small businesses, unions, parks, railroads, airports, universities, sports teams, and hundreds of other stakeholders - e

FCC Commissioner Offers Commonsense Advice to Rural Utilities Service

Publicly-funded broadband overbuild is an ongoing problem across the country.  It is far easier to deploy new services alongside existing infrastructure than to build-out to those who remain in unserved areas. 

FCC Works Through the Mid-Band Spectrum

On July 12, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to adopt an Order and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Expanding Flexible Use of the 3.7 to 4.2 GHz Band (GN Docket No. 18-122).

Without Oversight, RUS Broadband Grant Program Could Follow Path of Stimulus

The recently released Farm Bill contained many of the same wasteful spending items found in past Farm Bills, but also held a few surprises that if not contained with transparency and appropriate oversight could lead to further wasteful spending.

A Twentieth Anniversary Not Worth Celebrating

In 1996, Bill Clinton resided in the White House; science produced the first cloned mammal, a sheep named Dolly; folks were dancing the Macarena; and the Simpsons became the longest running prime-time animated series. Unfortunately, not all twenty year flashbacks are as much fun because in 1996, cell phones were the size of a brick and performed two functions -- calling people and text messaging; the Internet was merely a blip on the radar; and, the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was enacted.

Broadband as a Moving Target

On January 29, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) redefined what constitutes minimum standards for broadband access, raising the bar from the original standard of 4 Megabytes per second (Mbps) for download speeds, and 1 Mbps for upload speeds, to 25 Mbps download speeds and 3 Mbps upload speeds.

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