Tower Infrastructure Bill Gets Attention in Congress

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A bill to establish a Telecommunications Workforce Development Advisory Council to the FCC was introduced to the floor of the House of Representatives. U.S. Representatives Tim Walberg (R-MI) and Yvette Clarke (D-NY) co-sponsor the ‘‘Telecommunications Opportunities for Workers Engaging in Real Infrastructure Deployment Act of 2019’’ or the ‘‘TOWER Infrastructure Deployment Act.’’

The advisory council would develop and make recommendations to the FCC with respect to:

  1. The needs of the workforce in the communications industry to promote the deployment of communications facility installations;
  2. Ways to encourage participation in industry-led workforce development programs; and
  3. Ways to improve workforce development in the communications industry.

If the measure passes, the Advisory Council would be composed of members appointed that shall include at least one member representing, respectively — the Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, a state agency, a local agency, a Tribal agency, the communications industry; and a minority institution. The FCC Chairman would appoint members to serve on the council not more than 90 days after enactment.

“The National Association of Tower Erectors views this bipartisan legislation as another important vehicle to highlight the workforce needs of our diverse industry as we begin to ramp up for the protracted 5G deployment cycle,” said NATE Legislative & Regulatory Affairs Director Jim Goldwater. “NATE stands ready to collaborate with members of Congress and the FCC to participate in the workforce development specific initiatives that emerge upon the passage of this bill,” he said.

June 14, 2019

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