Iowa Communicator - August 10, 2018

 

August 10, 2018

In this Issue...

 

Headlines
ICA Works with State and National Associations on USDA Broadband Program; Seeks Member Input
Register today for our Convergence TV Conference!

Member News
New Employment Opportunities
Upcoming Meetings

FCC News
FCC Releases Pole Attachment Order

IUB News
Members Urged to Update Contact Info for IUB

Training Opportunities
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College Registration

Legislative News
Save the Date(s)!

Education and Events
Mark your calendars for our Executive Pathways Conference!
Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Webcast

Headlines

 

ICA Works with State and National Associations on USDA Broadband Program; Seeks Member Input

 We’ve received some inquiries regarding last week’s story on the USDA’s Notice of Inquiry proceeding seeking comment on how to implement its $600 million E-Connectivity broadband loan and grant pilot program and where to distribute the funding.  That program seeks to target “unserved” rural areas with populations of 20,000 or less in which at least 90% of the households to be served do not have 10/1 service. Click here for the USDA’s press release.

This week, Alliance CEO Dave Duncan gathered additional information from acting state Rural Development Director Tim Helmbrecht.  Meanwhile the Alliance in participating in discussions with all state and national telecom associations to share strategies on how best to

Comments are due September 10th, and USDA is seeking input on items such as:

  1. How to evaluate whether a rural household has “sufficient access” to 10/1 Mbps broadband defined in the law as 10/1 speed.  RUS is working to determine what types of technologies and services meet the sufficient access definition.
    1. RUS is seeking information about the transmission capacity required for economic development, and speed and latency, especially in peak usage hours, to ensure rural premises have access to coverage similar to that offered in urban areas.
    2. RUS is seeking comment on whether “broadband service affordability” should be a factor in deciding sufficient access, and if so, what equates to consumers’ costs being so high that they are effectively rendered inaccessible to rural households?
  2. Best options for verifying broadband service speeds, “given the limited availability of publicly-available information regarding accurate broadband speeds provided to rural households.”  What other sources of data should be used?
  3. RUS is working to ensure that projects funded by the e-Connectivity pilot provide improvements to rural prosperity that benefit rural industries such as agriculture, manufacturing, e-commerce, transportation, health care, and education.
    1. RUS is seeking comments on effective methods to measure “leading indicators” of potential project benefits using readily available public data.
    2. RUS is seeking comment on how to evaluate the viability of applications that include local utility partnership arrangements, including locally-owned telecommunications companies where possible.

The Alliance Regulatory Relations Committee will discuss strategies during next week’s committee meeting, and will continue to participate in national strategy discussions.  We invite members to share their thoughts with Caitlin Jarzen. 

Register today for our Convergence TV Conference!

Registration is starting to fill up fast for our Convergence TV conference. Make sure to get your registration in early before it sells-out! The conference will be held on September 11th and 12th at the West Des Moines Marriott.

 We have a great line-up of speakers and sponsors who have helped make this a high-quality event. You’ll hear from Innovative Systems and Skitter TV on September 11th for the Pre-Conference User Group sessions followed by a networking reception and optional TelePAC Bus, Brews, and Bites tour. The following day will kick off with an Aureon sponsored breakfast and various topics including:

  • Marketing TV in a streaming world
  • Commercial Break from Calix
  • Legal and regulatory update
  • Managed Wi-Fi
  • A story on how a rural provider dropped video
  • A tour of our TV competitors
  • And More!

We still have plenty of sponsorship opportunities available. If you’re interested in sponsorsing or registering for this event click here!

Please contact Brittany Bonnicksen if you have further questions!

Member News

 

New Employment Opportunities

Two of our members have new job openings available. 

Do you have an employment opportunity you would like to share with our membership? See our Career Opportunities page for more information!

Upcoming Meetings

Our committees are working diligently on all of our upcoming events. Here’s a list of upcoming committee meetings and times:

  • Impact Planning Committee - Thursday, August 16th at 10:00 AM 
  • ICA staff volunteers at the Iowa State Fair on Monday, August 13th from 12 Noon - 3:00 PM

FCC News

 

FCC Releases Pole Attachment Order

The FCC’s order “take one large step and several smaller steps to improve and speed the process of preparing poles for new attachments, or “make ready.”  It states that “make-ready generally refers to the modification or replacement of a utility pole, or of the lines or equipment on the utility pole, to accommodate additional facilities on the pole.” 

FCC says this move fundamentally shifts the framework for the vast majority of attachments governed by federal law by adopting a new pole attachment process that includes “one-touch make-ready” (OTMR), in which the new attacher performs all make-ready work.  This includes moving existing communications attachments if deemed necessary. 

FCC also requires utilities to allow “overlashing” and it clarifies that new attachers are not responsible for the costs of repairing pre-existing violations of safety or other codes.  It also eliminates outdated disparities between the pole attachment rates ILECs must pay compared to others. 

Click here to read the FCC’s Order. 

(Please contact Dave Duncan for more information).

IUB News

 

Members Urged to Update Contact Info for IUB

Does it seem like there are some emails from the IUB you are not receiving?  Or, maybe your main contact person for IUB emails has changed. 

We urge all members to make sure their contact info is up to date.  IUB Director of Communications Don Tormey tells how to update your company contact information with the Iowa Utilities Board:

The Iowa Utilities Board stores 3 contact types in their electronic filing system.

  1. Regulatory – This person serves as the primary contact within the utility company and receives all blast notifications on filings and news releases.
  2. Billing – This person is primary contact for invoicing and accounting relating matters.
  3. Emergencies During Non-Office Hours – This person serves as the primary contact for any communication regarding outages and emergencies.  

In addition to annual report filings, the IUB relies on companies to notify the IUB of company changes and contact information updates. IUB asks that requests be made in writing on company letterhead and submitted via its electronic filing system (https://efs.iowa.gov). Please note that any original signatures must be redacted. Contact information updates should be filed within the company’s M docket with the four-digit company number (M-XXXX). IUB has a search tool available to look up your company number.

IUB Customer Service staff is available to Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm by calling 515-725-7300, or by email to [email protected] if you have any questions on the filing process.

(Please contact Dave Duncan for more information).

Training Opportunities

 

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College Registration

The Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College is opening registration for a new one-year Broadband Internet Technician program that replaces it existing 2-year Broadband Technologies program.  Online training begins August 27th

Legislative News

 

 Save the Date(s)!

 

Brew TourSeptember 11, 2018, following the Convergence TV conference.
2019 Welcome Back Reception January 8,2019
2019 Day on the Hill February 20, 2019, 11 am – 1 pm.  

Education and Events

 

Mark your calendars for our Executive Pathways Conference! 

The Leadership Conference that was formerly held in June of each year has been moved and rebranded for our CEOs, GMs and all managerial-level employees! It will be held at the Wild Rose Casino in Jefferson, Iowa on October 2nd. The committee rebranded the event, so it is now called the “Executive Pathways Conference: Polished leadership for key personnel.” The one-day leadership conference will hone and improve your leadership skills with a fresh new perspective from our executive line-up of speakers. The conference will help key personnel with their vision and inspire new leadership skills they can apply immediately. Topics that will be covered will include:

  • Telecommuting
  • Time Management
  • Personality Styles, Building Strengths and Developing Employees
  • A Renewable Resource Management Simulation
  • Learn ways to save your town and get involved to be a better leader!
  • And more!

Click here to register or learn more!

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Webcast
Wednesday, August 29th at 2:00 pm.

The conversations around sexual harassment seemed to have spread like wildfire in the last year with increasing discussions happening every day. Last year TIME magazine released the ME TOO “silence breakers” as the 2017 Person of the Year which raised a lot of attention to this matter. This is a topic that has now been at the forefront for HR professionals discussing best practices, how to handle these situations, and how to prevent this from happening.

Unfortunately, the ugly truth is sexual harassment happens in the workplace. Is your company prepared to handle the situation appropriately if/when this happens?

Join us on August 29th at 2:00 pm to hear from Christy Smith, an HR expert to discuss the different types of sexual harassment, how you can prevent this, and best practices if/when this arises. Members who are not CyberPass holders should contact Brittany Bonnicksen to get signed up or register below.  

Register Here

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