S ___, the National Broadband Strategy Act of 2002.
Sponsor: Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT).
Date Introduced: June 6, 2002.
Source: Office of Sen. Lieberman.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
Mr. LIEBERMAN introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on ______
To require a report to Congress on a national strategy for the deployment of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications services, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ‘‘National Broadband Strategy Act of 2002’’.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
Congress makes the following findings:
(1) The United States needs to develop a long-term investment and growth strategy that will restore the unprecedented gains in structural economic productivity with high employment growth experienced by the United States in the late 1990s.
(2) The gains in structural productivity with high employment growth in the late 1990s resulted from unprecedented investments in information and communication technology.
(3) It was the precipitous decline in these investments that took the United States economy into recession before September 11, 2001.
(4) The United States needs to focus on stimulating resurgence in these investments to regain vibrant growth in structural productivity and high employment growth.
(5) If productivity increases at the rate of 1.5 percent per year, the standard of living will double about every 46 years, or about every two generations. On the other hand, if productivity increases at the rate of 3 percent per year, the standard of living will double about every 23 years, or about every generation. This difference results from the so-called miracle of compounding. To take advantage of compounding, a long-term economic strategy for the United States must focus on structural productivity growth.
(6) Productivity growth has enabled American workers to produce 30 times as much in goods and services in 1999 as they produced in 1899, with only 5 times as many workers. This growth in productivity has increased the standard of living in the United States from $4,200 in 1899 to $33,740 in 1999 (expressed in 1999 dollars). Growth in structural productivity will bring about growth in wages and salaries, profits, and government tax receipts.
(7) The productivity gains of the United States in the late 1990s broke a 25-year trend. From the early 1970s to the mid-1990s, United States productivity grew sluggishly, at an annual rate of about 1.5 percent. During the final 5 years of the 20th Century, it grew at nearly double that rate.
(8) The high cyclical productivity growth the United States has experienced in 2001 and 2002 results for the most part from a reduction in employment and increased utilization of existing capacity.
(9) The United States needs a strategy to generate structural productivity growth arising from the development and deployment of new technology that enhances both efficiency and employment.
(10) The United States needs to prepare now for the retirement of the Baby Boom generation. If the United States does nothing regarding Social Security, it is estimated that by 2030 the annual shortfall between amounts in the Social Security Trust Fund and the amount required to meet obligations of the Fund will reach $814,000,000,000 (in 1999 dollars). The United States has approximately $7,4000,000,000,000 in obligations coming due, and it advisable to have our fiscal house in order, hopefully with no national debt, when these obligations must be paid. Restoring structural productivity and high employment growth is essential to ensure that the United States can honor these obligations.
(11) Making affordable, high speed broadband Internet connections of 10 Mbps-100 Mbps available to all American homes and small businesses has the potential to restore structural productivity and employment growth.
(12) High speed broadband Internet applications for voice, data, graphics, and video will revolutionize many aspects of life at home, school, and work. High speed broadband Internet will transform health care, commerce, government, and education. The benefits of a successful high speed broadband Internet deployment strategy to the quality of life and economy of the United States will be immeasurable.
(13) Traditionally, the United States is considered the world leader in the development and commercialization of new innovations and technologies. However, the United States lags far behind other countries in broadband deployment, including South Korea, Canada, and Sweden. By 2005, the United States is projected to fall to ninth place in broadband deployment, surpassed by Asian markets in Hong Kong and Singapore, the Scandinavian countries Denmark and Norway, and the Netherlands.
(14) The United States will need high speed broadband Internet for public health, education, and economic welfare, just as the United States now needs universal telephone service. High speed broadband Internet applications are capable of revitalizing the economy and solving countless problems for average Americans. The applications fall into the areas of e-education, e-health, e-commerce, e-government, and e-entertainment.
(15) The benefits that will arise from development and implementation of a national high speed broadband Internet strategy amply justify a priority for such a strategy. The Federal Government will act one way or another on many of the key policy issues affecting broadband deployment. The only question is whether it acts in accordance with a strategy, or piecemeal.
(15) Adopting a national strategy for broadband deployment is consistent with the strategies the United States has adopted to speed deployment of other essential infrastructure, including railroads, electric power, telephone service, and radio and television. Each of those technologies has been the focus of a national economic strategy. There is a consensus that the Northwest Ordinance, Morrill Land-Grant Act, and GI bill, and laws for transcontinental railroads, rural electrification, and the interstate highway system, embodied useful and successful strategies for the future of the United States.
(16) In facilitating high speed broadband Internet deployment, the United States should rely on markets and entrepreneurs and minimize the intrusion of government. Americans need to be creative and innovative when government acts to make sure that it provides value added.
(17) In crafting a comprehensive strategy to advance deployment of high speed broadband Internet, a broad range of policy options should be addressed, and the Administration needs to provide leadership in developing these options and establishing a priority among them.
SEC. 3. NATIONAL STRATEGY FOR HIGH SPEED BROADBAND INTERNET DEPLOYMENT.
(a) STRATEGY FOR INCREASING STRUCTURAL PRODUCTIVITY AND EMPLOYMENT GROWTH.—Not later than six months after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President shall submit to Congress a report setting forth a strategy for the nation-wide deployment of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications services.
(b) ELEMENTS.—The report under subsection (a) shall include the following:
(1) A goal for the deployment of broadband telecommunications services nationwide, including a goal regarding the speeds necessary to facilitate applications needed to stimulate structural productivity and employment growth.
(2) A proposal for policies to foster and maintain competition among firms offering broadband telecommunications service, including competition to deploy high speed broadband Internet of 10 Mbps-100 Mbps.
(3) A proposal for incentives to enhance demand for high speed broadband Internet telecommunications service, including demand for purposes of serving Federal mission areas such as homeland security, distance learning, health, scientific collaboration, and electronic commerce.
(4) A proposal for incentives to facilitate and enhance the supply of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications service.
(5) A proposal to enhance global electronic commerce.
(6) A proposal for the optimal allocation of Federal Government resources on research and development regarding high speed broadband Internet telecommunications service, including recommendations for the allocation and prioritization of Federal funds.
(7) A proposal for the optimal allocation of spectrum in furtherance of the deployment of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications service.
(8) An assessment of various limitations to the deployment of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications service, including matters relating to taxation, privacy, security, spamming, content, intellectual property, and rights-of-way, and proposals for eliminating or alleviating such limitations.
(9) An assessment of the impact of the proposals under this subsection on structural productivity and employment growth in the United States and on the international economic competitiveness of the United States.
(10) Any other proposals or matters on the deployment of high speed broadband Internet telecommunications services that the President considers appropriate.
(c) FORM.—The report under subsection (a) shall include a draft proposal of any legislation required to implement the goal described in paragraph (1) of subsection (b), and of any of the proposals set forth under paragraphs (2) through (8) and (10) of that subsection (b).