September 18, 2019

Hoeven Convenes Hearing on Broadband in Indian Country

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven (R-ND), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, today convened an oversight hearing titled “GAO Report on Tribal Access to Spectrum: Promoting Communications Services in Indian Country.”


“Having the ability to readily access broadband furthers economic development, educational achievement, and public health and safety. Unfortunately, tribal populations have lower levels of broadband access relative to other areas of the United States,” said Hoeven. “We are encouraged by the results of the Government Accountability Office’s report and look forward to working with the FCC to improve its training, technical assistance, and consultation with tribal governments and organizations on spectrum-related matters.”


In his opening remarks and during questioning, Hoeven examined the FCC’s response to the GAO’s report, Tribal Broadband: FCC Should Undertake Efforts to Better Promote Tribal Access to Spectrum, which identify ways the FCC can remove regulatory obstacles to streamline telecommunications buildout in Indian country. 


The Committee received testimony from:


MR. ANDREW VON AH, Director of Physical Infrastructure Issues, U.S. Government Accountability Office, Washington, D.C.


MR. DON STOCKDALE, Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, Washington, D.C.


MS. BELINDA NELSON, Chairperson, Gila River Telecommunications, Inc., Chandler, AZ


MS. KIMBALL SEKAQUAPTEWA, Chief Technology Director, Santa Fe Indian School, Santa Fe, NM


For the GAO’s report, click here.


For complete testimony and video of the hearing, click here.