March 2016
Hello Broadband Advocates- 

Welcome to Let's Talk Broadband, a quarterly newsletter keeping California's public officials up to speed on broadband issues across the Golden State.


This issue is brought to you by the California Emerging Technology Fund (CETF).

Let's Talk Broadband 

A panel talks about the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF), alternative funding opportunities, and more before the California Broadband Council on February 4th, 2016.

Momentum is Building

The most recent meeting of the California Broadband Council is a manifestation of the incredible progress the state is making towards full adoption of high-speed Internet and ultimately closing the digital divide.

Highlights included a panel discussion on broadband funding opportunities, an update on the recently released FirstNet request for proposals, a presentation on the latest round of Broadband Infrastructure and Improvement Grants (BIIG 2.0) for underserved schools, and more.  Review the agenda from this meeting and read the official minutes to get up to speed.

Continue reading for a recent interview with Director Carlos Ramos of the California Department of Technology, current information on the Internet for All Now Act (AB1758), and a look at state and national broadband advocacy, tools, and best practices. 

We thank you for your continued work in connecting all Californians.
Sunne Wright McPeak, President and CEO
California Emerging Technology Fund
Leaders in Action


In an effort to spotlight regional broadband champions, we will be posting interviews with Leaders in Action to hear how they are working to close the Digital Divide.  Our latest Leaders in Action profile highlights the work of Carlos Ramos, the CIO/Director of the California Department of Technology and Chair of the California Broadband Council (CBC). 


Director Ramos is concluding his service as CIO/Director of the California Department of Technology and Chairman of the CBC as of March 31, 2016.  We wish him well and thank him for his many years of dedicated leadership. 


Stanislaus County Supervisor Vito Chiesa, President of California State Association of Counties (CSAC), Tehama County Supervisor Bob Williams, Second Vice Chair of Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC), and City of Rancho Cucamonga Mayor Dennis Michael, First Vice President of League of California Cities (LCC) were profiled in a past Leaders in Action profile here.


Our past conversations with Josť Cisneros, the Treasurer for the City and County of San Francisco, and the Immediate Past President of the League of California Cities (LCC), and Mountain View Councilmember Mike Kasperzak, a Past President of LCC are available here and our conversation with Contra Costa County Supervisor John Gioia, the Immediate Past President of the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), can be seen here.
Join the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), the Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC), The California Black Chamber, the Communications Workers of America, and many other elected leaders, state and local agencies, and community organizations in advocating for broadband deployment and adoption in the Golden State.  The Internet For All Now Act is essential to ensure that California meets the Legislature's statutory goal to achieve 98% broadband deployment while focusing first on reaching unserved households and then transitioning to higher-speed networks. 

The Internet For All Now Act or AB1758 also sets a new goal of getting 90% of all households online by 2023 and authorizes funding to assist low-income households so that our most disadvantaged residents can be included in the Digital Economy.

Your continued leadership will help close the Digital Divide in California and your support will be pivotal in securing passage of AB1758.  We cannot continue to leave millions of Californians behind or vulnerable in this Digital World. 

You will find more information about the bill here and a growing list of supporters here.  If you would like to add your name to the list of leaders working hard to provide access to all Californians, please see this template for your convenience, and let your constituents and community members know you are fighting for their right to digital inclusion and equal opportunity. 
Broadband Advocacy Across the State and Nation 
Both the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), the Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC) and the League of California Cities (LCC) are strong advocates for broadband deployment and adoption in the Golden State. 

The LCC hosted a workshop on broadband and economic development at their annual conference and the CSAC followed suit at their annual conference, providing tools to help unserved and underserved communities address the "digital divide" and obtain funding for priority projects.

In a few weeks, nearly 350 regional business, civic and elected officials will participate in the annual Capitol-to-Capitol program in Washington D.C.  This year, 11 policy teams from the Sacramento region drafted papers outlining policy positions and solutions honing in on three critical areas of investment: infrastructure, people, and strategic initiatives.  This year the Food and Agriculture team will be coordinating with the Economic and Community Development team to advocate for grant funding to expand broadband access in rural communities. Read more here.
Broadband Leadership Call to Action
In This Issue
Funding Opportunities

Community-based organizations are invited to submit a Letter of Interest by March 31, 2016

Applications are accepted on a quarterly basis with an upcoming deadline of July 1, 2016

Applications are currently being accepted on a rolling basis

The CPUC Defines 'Broadband' As Minimum Speeds of 6 Mbps Download and 1.5 Mbps Upload.
Test Your Internet Speed Here!

 Partner Organizations


Tools and Resources
Boost Public Engagement with Technology
Public Engagement and Technology

Resources from the Institute for Local Government (ILG):

 Call To Action 
to Close the Digital Divide  

Resources from previous Local Government Roundtables: 

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For more information about this newsletter and to submit topic suggestions, please contact: 

Jodi Mulligan-Pfile 

Valley Vision

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