Report to Congress Containing the National Broadband Plan. Under section 6001(k) of the Recovery Act, the Commission must develop a national broadband plan by February 17, 2010, to ensure that all people of the United States have access to broadband capability and establish benchmarks for meeting that goal. See Recovery Act § 6001(k). The plan must include the following:
• An analysis of the most effective and efficient mechanisms for ensuring broadband access by all people of the United States.
• A detailed strategy for achieving affordability of such service and maximum utilization of broadband infrastructure and service by the public.
• An evaluation of the status of deployment of broadband service, including progress of projects supported by the grants made under BTOP.
• A plan for use of broadband infrastructure and services in advancing consumer welfare, civic participation, public safety and homeland security, community development, health care delivery, energy independence and efficiency, education, worker training, private sector investment, entrepreneurial activity, job creation and economic growth, and other national purposes.
Through a Notice of Inquiry released on April 9, 2009 the Commission is developing a public record on which to consider the national broadband plan. (No BTOP funding has been transferred to the FCC at this time.)
Consultation on BTOP. Under section 6001(a)-(j) of the Recovery Act, the Commission must consult or coordinate with the Assistant Secretary on:
• Establishing a national broadband service development and expansion program in conjunction with the BTOP. See Recovery Act § 6001(a).
• Publishing the non-discrimination and network interconnection obligations that shall be contractual conditions of grants awarded under this section, including, at a minimum, adherence to the principles contained in the Commission's broadband policy statement (FCC 05-151, adopted August 5, 2005). See Recovery Act § 6001(j).
• Defining terms such as “unserved area,” “underserved areas,” and “broadband” so that NTIA may benefit from the Commission’s considerable expertise in these matters. See H.R. Conf. Rep. No. 111-16, at 776 (2009).
Consultation on Health Information Study and Report. Under Section 4104(b) of the Recovery Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services will consult with the FCC and other relevant agencies in conducting a study on:
• The current availability of open source health information technology systems to Federal safety net providers (including small, rural providers).
• The total cost of ownership of such systems in comparison to the cost of proprietary commercial products available.
• The ability of such systems to respond to the needs of, and be applied to, various populations (including children and disabled individuals).
• The capacity of such systems to facilitate interoperability. See Recovery Act § 4104(b).