Last week RCRC submitted formal comment to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) on its proceeding implementing the broadband middle-mile provisions of Senate Bill 156 (Chapter 112, Statutes of 2021). RCRC is a party to the proceeding, the Order Instituting Rulemaking Regarding Broadband Infrastructure Deployment (R 20-09-001), and has filed comments on multiple phases of the proceeding.

Thursday, the Administrative Law Judge for the proceeding directed parties to submit further comments as part of the CPUC’s efforts to collect data on locations for the state-owned, open access middle mile. Comments are due by October 1, 2021. All members of the public can submit comments to  the CPUC without becoming a formal party by using this link. All related proceeding documents can be found here.

SB 156 was signed into law on July 20, 2021, and made significant investments in broadband deployment, including, $3.25 billion in a state-owned, open-access middle-mile infrastructure. The new law directs the CPUC to solicit and receive comment on the locations for the middle mile infrastructure within 90 days on the enactment of the bill. To assist the CPUC in collecting relevant information on existing and needed broadband infrastructure in member counties, RCRC staff is coordinating individual county discussions with the CPUC staff. If your county is interested in meeting with the CPUC on middle-mile infrastructure, please contact RCRC Senior Legislative Advocate, Tracy Rhine.