March 16, 2010

Statement from Sen. Udall on National Broadband Plan

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall, D-N.M., a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, released the following statement on the National Broadband Plan:

"Broadband enables new opportunities to improve economic development, education and healthcare delivery in New Mexico and across the nation. Yet, over the last decade the United States has gone from being a world leader in Internet penetration to ranking 15th or worse among developed countries and New Mexico ranking 46th among states. As a result, nearly 100 million Americans lack broadband at home today -- either because they cannot afford it or because broadband is not available where they live.

"The National Broadband Plan put forward by the Federal Communications Commission today will help reverse these alarming trends.  

"I am particularly pleased that FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has chosen to help address the digital divide on Tribal lands by including my proposal to establish an FCC Office of Tribal Affairs. Less than ten percent of people on Tribal lands have access to broadband connections, and I believe that improving cooperation and coordination with Tribal leaders on a government-to-government basis can help us improve these dire statistics and create new opportunities.

"I look forward to working with FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski and my Congressional colleagues on the plan's implementation and to ensure that America has world-class broadband networks that will benefit all Americans."