Trump Signs O'Halleran Bills to Bolster Rural Telecommunications Infrastructure into Law

March 24, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Today, Congressman Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01) applauded President Trump’s signature of three O’Halleran-led telecommunications bills that will improve broadband access in rural areas and protect our growing national telecommunications infrastructure from foreign threats.

Last night, President Trump signed S. 1822, the Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Availability (DATA) Act, O’Halleran legislation to update the national broadband map and ensure that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is collecting accurate coverage data and allocating robust infrastructure funds to the rural, tribal, and underserved areas that need them most. The president also signed S. 893, O’Halleran’s Secure 5G and Beyond Act, which requires the development of a national strategy to protect the security of 5G and future telecommunications systems in the United States and among U.S. allies.

“In these uncertain times, reliable, high-speed internet is critical for children participating in online learning, employees working from home, and countless American families seeking telehealth resources,” said O’Halleran. “This global pandemic has reinforced the need to expand and ensure these essential services for all Americans, especially those in rural, tribal, and underserved communities like many in Arizona’s First Congressional District.”

Earlier this month, President Trump also signed H.R. 4998, the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act, O’Halleran-backed legislation that requires the FCC to take comprehensive steps to financially assist rural telecommunications carriers in removing and replacing vulnerable equipment that was purchased from foreign manufacturers who may pose as national security threats.

“We must ensure that, as our national telecommunications infrastructure evolves towards 5G capability and is used to keep many safe at home, we continue to prioritize the security and privacy of all Americans,” continued O’Halleran. “I am pleased to see the president sign these important bills into law that will aid rural and tribal telecommunications providers in both growing and securing their networks.”

Note:

S. 1822 and S. 893 are Senate counterpart legislation to O’Halleran’s H.R. 4229 and H.R. 2881, which passed out of the House and were sent to the Senate in December 2019 and January 2020.

S. 1822/H.R. 4229 are later versions of O'Halleran's original Broadband Data Improvement Act of 2019

O’Halleran is a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over electronic communications and the internet.

 

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