[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 51 (Wednesday, March 18, 2009)]
[Page 11531]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-5838]



National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Notice: Broadband Grant Programs Meetings

AGENCY: National Telecommunications and Information Administration 
(NTIA), U.S. Department of Commerce.

ACTION: Notice of Meetings, Clarification.


Summary: On February 24, 2009, the National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration (NTIA) published a Notice in the Federal 
Register announcing its intention to begin holding meetings on March 2, 
2009, in connection with the broadband grant programs described in the 
Broadband Data Services Improvement Act, Public Law No. 110-385, and 
the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), 
Public Law No. 111-5 (collectively, ``Broadband Grant Programs''). This 
Notice provides clarification regarding those meetings.

DATES: March 16, 2009.

ADDRESSES: U.S. Department of Commerce, National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration, 1401 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, 
DC 20230.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barbara Brown at (202) 482-4374 or 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On February 24, 2009, NTIA published a 
Notice announcing a joint public meeting with the U.S. Department of 
Agriculture (USDA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to 
discuss the Broadband Initiatives contained in the Recovery Act. See 
Joint Notice of Public Meeting, 74 Fed. Reg. 8914 (Feb. 27, 2009) 
(announcing a joint public meeting on March 10, 2009). At the same 
time, NTIA published a Notice announcing its intention to begin holding 
meetings on March 2, 2009 in response to numerous requests received 
from individuals and groups interested in the program. See Notice of 
Meetings, 74 Fed. Reg. 8233 (Feb. 24, 2009). This Notice explained the 
manner in which individuals and groups could request meetings and the 
treatment of such meetings as ex parte presentations. Since the 
publication of these Notices, NTIA has received over 2,500 requests for 
meetings from interested parties.
    Subsequently, NTIA and USDA's Rural Utilities Service announced 
that the agencies would hold six public meetings on March 16, 17, 18, 
19, 23, and 24, 2009, about the new broadband grants, loans, and loan 
guarantees funded by the Recovery Act and accept written comments about 
the programs through April 13, 2009. See Joint Request for Information 
and Notice of Public Meetings, 74 Fed. Reg. 10716 (March 12, 2009). 
These public meetings will be conducted as roundtables, will be open to 
the public, and also will be webcast. Transcripts and all written 
comments received also will be available. Participation in the public 
meetings and the filing of written comments is encouraged. For further 
information about these meetings and to submit and view written 
comments, please see NTIA's website at http://www.ntia.doc.gov/broadbandgrants/.
    As a result of the overwhelming demand from interested parties for 
meetings and the expedited time frames in the Recovery Act for making 
the broadband grant, loan, and loan guarantee funds available, NTIA 
will not able to accommodate all meeting requests received. The agency, 
however, does reserve the right to schedule such ex parte meetings as 
necessary to fulfill the needs of the Broadband Grant Program. All 
other information provided in the Notice of Meetings remains unchanged.

    Dated: March 13, 2009.
Kathy D. Smith,
Chief Counsel, National Telecommunications and Information 
[FR Doc. E9-5838 Filed 3-13-09; 4:15 pm]