Pueblo Tribe to Get Broadband Boost from Unassigned 2.5 GHz Spectrum

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The FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau on Monday granted emergency Special Temporary Authority to the Ashiwi College & Career Readiness Center to use unassigned 2.5 GHz spectrum to provide wireless broadband service over the Pueblo of Zuni reservation in New Mexico during the pandemic. The school, formerly the University of New Mexico Gallup-Zuni Campus, was established by the Zuni Tribe in 2016.

“Providing temporary access to this spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band is important because it will help ensure connectivity to Tribal consumers during this time of increased demand,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “I’ve seen the digital divide on tribal lands, including pueblos in New Mexico. That’s why I’m committed to finding creative solutions, like today’s grant of emergency relief, to keep tribal lands connected.”  

In addition to supporting emergency relief to meet increased broadband demands during the pandemic, the Commission continues to accept priority applications from eligible tribes for licensed access to unassigned 2.5 GHz spectrum in the rural tribal window, which closes August 3. The grant of emergency temporary access to the 2.5 GHz spectrum will not affect its availability to eligible tribal applicants. In processing requests for temporary authority to use unassigned spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band, the Commission is ensuring that applicants obtain the consent of relevant tribes if the geographic scope of a request includes rural tribal lands.  

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