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Tag Archives: Jonathan Adelstein

Outsized Economic Impact of Wireless Infrastructure Investment Projected

Private investment in wireless infrastructure, if unfettered, will have a huge impact on the U.S. economy across the next five years, according to a study released by PCIA – The Wireless Infrastructure Association.

PCIA President and CEO Jonathan Adelstein announced the report’s findings, at the AGL Regional Conference in Chicago.

The study, titled “Wireless Broadband Infrastructure: A catalyst for GDP and Job Growth 2013-2017,” looked at the direct and indirect benefits of wireless infrastructure development, projecting mobile broadband investments of between $34-36 billion per year that will serve as a catalyst for between $863 billion and $1.2 trillion in economic development. The impact on the overall economy is estimated to be an increase in GDP in 2017 of 1.6 percent to 2.2 percent or between $259.1 billion and $355.3 billion.

“That means the wireless industry will generate 606 percent more for the economy than it invests,” Adelstein told an audience of 200. “That is pretty good bang for the buck…or for the billions in this case.”

The report, produced by Information Age Economics, said more than 28,000 jobs in 2017 and more than 122,000 jobs in the next 5 years will be created in the wireless infrastructure industry alone. Overall, including indirect impact, 1.2 million net new jobs will be generated, even with the potential job losses due to increased productivity.

“We are talking jobs when this country most needs them and economic growth when the rest of the world is taking steps to make sure their countries are competitive,” he said.

Adelstein said it was time for the wireless industry to receive it due as a catalyst for efficiency and an enabler for job growth.  The data from the report will be used by the association convince government officials of the economic benefits of zoning ordinances that enable the siting of wireless infrastructure.

“It is high time we put some numbers on [the wireless revolution],” he said. “These are numbers we can use again and again as we fight to get wireless infrastructure sited and built out as soon as we can to meet the demand,” he said. “We are going to say, ‘you gotta stay out of our way and let us build these networks.’”

Adelstein discussed some changes to wireless regulation, which the association supports, dubbed “4G Policies for a 4G World,” which would:

·        Recognize that small cells and distributed antenna systems, the face of next-generation networks, should not be subject to the same environmental and historic preservation regulations as their tower cousins;

·        State that carriers should not have to provide proof of need when deploying a wireless facility;

·        Facilitate the efficient use of existing support structures, including towers, buildings, water tanks, and utility poles, to ensure that coverage and capacity can be delivered as quickly to all parts of our country with minimal impact.

A copy of the IAE report is accessible online at www.pcia.com.


PCIA Strategizing to Expand State Legislative Focus

PCIA is going to be keeping a close eye on the state and local regulatory scenes looking to ensure that its successes on the federal side translate to positive local action for cell site developers, Jonathan Adelstein, president and CEO, PCIA, told AGL Bulletin.

“We are interested in pursuing additional state level initiatives that will reinforce the success we have had on the federal level with Section 6409, the FCC shot clock and Obama’s executive order on siting on federal land,” Adelstein said. “We want to build on that momentum and expand our state initiatives to facilitate broadband wireless deployment.”

California is at the top of the list of states that are known for cell siting issues. The association is in the process of hiring a lobbyist in the state and is working with coalition partners on a legislative proposal.

“We hear a lot of concerns from the citizens of California and the tech industry, that even though it is a hotbed of innovation in wireless technology, it is difficult for consumers there to get adequate bandwidth to their devices,” Adelstein said. “There are real capacity constraints, and it can be real difficult to deploy wireless broadband networks in various places there. There is room for progress because the vast bulk of consumers and legislators understand the importance of wireless broadband for economic productivity and job growth.”

Adelstein mentioned that the association has already had success on the state level in November of last year when the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania passed a law streamlining and fully defining its review process for collocations.

“We are going to build on our legislative successes,” he said. “We have a pretty good record on getting state legislation enacted. We are developing a strategy based on where there is a need and an opportunity.”

PCIA has not lost sight of the national picture, however. The association continues to work on getting the court’s approval for the FCC’s shot clock ruling.  Earlier this month, it made a “friend of the court” filing urging the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals’ upholding of the FCC’s authority.

Adelstein to Succeed Fitch as PCIA’s Head

Jonathan Adelstein, administrator of the Agriculture Department’s Rural Utilities Service, former FCC commissioner and Senate aide, will be Mike Fitch’s successor as PCIA’s president and CEO. PCIA could not do much better than tap into the experience of Adelstein, who has the one-two-three punch of serving at the FCC, the U.S. Senate and the USDA. It would give the association the street cred it needs to further the regulatory and legislative goals of the wireless industry within Washington’s corridors of power.

“Jonathan possesses the leadership ability, industry knowledge and policy experience to lead PCIA for the future,” said Marc Ganzi, CEO of Global Tower Partners and chairman of the PCIA Board of Directors. “PCIA continues to grow and ably represent the rapidly evolving wireless infrastructure industry. Our next great challenge is to address the wireless data crunch. We will aggressively pursue policies that reduce barriers to network deployment, increase spectrum efficiencies and expand wireless infrastructure.”

Most recently Adelstein’s expertise was recognized by President Obama who nominated him to serve as the Administrator of USDA’s Rural Utilities Service in 2009. Before that Adelstein served as commissioner of the FCC from 2002 to 2009. Additionally, Adelstein has 15 years of experience as U.S. staff member, including seven years senior legislative aide to then-Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD), where he advised him on among other things telecommunications policy.

“I’m thrilled to begin this new chapter in the private sector with a strong organization that has done so much to help an industry that is improving the American economy and quality of life,” said Adelstein. “It’s the ideal opportunity for me to continue my efforts to maximize wireless broadband everywhere, and to facilitate industry efforts to deploy urgently needed infrastructure to meet the exploding demand for wireless data.”

Adelstein’s departure of the USDA was announced by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Friday, who thanked him for his three years of service, administering investments through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in rural America.

“Under Jonathan’s leadership, USDA expanded broadband access for nearly seven million Americans and 365,000 rural businesses, provided more than 5,500 grants and loans to modernize rural water and waste systems, and strengthened rural telecommunications services,” Vilsack said.