NGLCC Applauds President Obama for Opening Up Spectrum through the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015

Washington, D.C. — The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), the business voice of the LGBT community, applauds President Obama for signing the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. The Act includes the Spectrum Pipeline Act of 2015, which will open airwaves to consumers in order to encourage growth and innovation.
Small business owners rely on wireless (WiFi, cellular, and Bluetooth technology) to communicate with customers, learn about new opportunities, and grow their businesses.  Access to these technologies requires airwaves, or “spectrum”. However, increasing consumer demand of wirelessly connected devices and bandwidth-intensive applications will put significant strain on wireless networks in the future. The looming “spectrum crunch” is not quickly solved, as clearing and deploying new spectrum takes more than ten years on average. 
The NGLCC applauds Congress’s new budget deal, which includes the Spectrum Pipeline Act of 2015. This act calls for 30 MHz of federally owned spectrum to be auctioned off for commercial use by 2024. However, while this act is a step in the right direction, it is not enough to satisfy anticipated future consumer demand for wireless technology access. 
As the largest spectrum holder in the United States, the federal government can help solve this problem by allocating more airwaves for consumer use. It is crucial that the federal government continue identifying spectrum that can be sold and setting dates for spectrum auctions. Additionally, Congress can allot funds to research more effective uses of spectrum in the federal government and incentivize repurposing spectrum in federal agencies.
“Access to wireless and cellular technology is crucial for LGBT business owners to succeed and for Certified LGBT Business Enterprise® (Certified LGBTBE®) companies to continue to grow and create jobs,” said NGLCC Co-Founder and President, Justin Nelson. “Congress must allocate more airwaves to consumers so that LGBT business owners can compete in the national economy.”
“Not only do Certified LGBTBE® companies need access to wireless technology and spectrum to succeed, they need access to create innovations in the technology sector,” added NGLCC Co-Founder and CEO, Chance Mitchell. “By opening federal spectrum up to consumers, Congress can enable LGBT business owners to make technological advances that will help the U.S. compete on the global stage.”
The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is the business voice of the LGBT community and is the largest global not-for-profit advocacy organization specifically dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC is the exclusive certification body for LGBT-owned businesses.
Adam Shapiro
Download Press Release as PDF here.
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