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Agenda for CLIC Day
Tuesday, November 7th from 1:00-5:15 p.m.

An Action Plan for Local Internet Choice in 2017 and Beyond

Great nations are built on great cities and towns. Over the last few years, local communities across America have come to realize that their ability to achieve greatness, or even success, in the years ahead will increasingly depend on their ability to acquire affordable access to fiber-rich communications networks. That is so because fiber networks, like electric power systems a century ago, are platforms and drivers of simultaneous progress in just about everything that is important to communities, including economic development, education, public safety, health care, transportation, environmental protection, energy, government services, democratic discourse, entertainment and much more.

Today, a large and rapidly growing number of communities are aggressively seeking access to advanced communications capabilities by working with willing incumbent carriers, entering into public-private partnerships with new entrants, building their own networks or developing other creative approaches. In these endeavors, the key to successful outcomes is the ability to choose among the options that work best for the community. Unfortunately, in some 20 states, local internet choice is constrained by legal or other barriers.

The coming year will be critical for local internet choice. CLIC and its allies must redouble efforts to make local internet choice a national priority at all levels of government, to oppose new state barriers and to roll back as many of the existing barriers as possible.

Join us in Atlanta on November 7 for our next half-day CLIC program, where we will bring together some of the key thought leaders in our field, review what we’ve learned in 2017 and develop a game plan for all of us in the CLIC community — government officials, private sector leaders, community advocates and many others — to be as effective as possible in 2018.

As a special feature, our keynote speaker, Gary Bolles, Director of the Future of Work program at Singularity University, will help us understand the critical relationship between local internet choice and the future of work.


1-1:15 p.m.
Welcome from CLIC President, Jim Baller, and CEO, Joanne Hovis

1:15-2:15 p.m.
Reviewing the 2017 State Legislative Session – and Looking to 2018

With the 2017 state legislative season in the rearview mirror, this panel will review the lessons learned from battles over bills involving barriers to local broadband initiatives and public-private partnerships. The good news: Of the numerous restrictive bills introduced around the country in 2017, not a single one became law. Unfortunately, neither did any of the bills that would have removed existing state barriers. We’ll look at how these battles were won and lost and consider steps to take during the 2018 legislative session to hold the line on new barriers… and how to roll back as many existing barriers as possible.

Jim Baller - President, CLIC

Erin Wynia - Legislative Counsel, NCLM
Deb Socia - Executive Director, Next Century Cities
Ashley Stelfox - General Counsel, CLIC
Ken Fellman - Attorney, Kissinger & Fellman, P.C., Denver, CO

2:15-2:30 p.m.

2:30-3:15 p.m.
The Virginia Battle: Successful Digital Campaigns & Telling the Story of Community Broadband
Of all the 2017 legislative battles, the one in Virginia generated the most attention. It featured a savvy web presence, frequent editorials and media coverage and a strong call to action for local constituents to oppose the bill. Although they often choose to work quietly behind the scenes in opposing restrictive bills, local advocates in Virginia felt that a no-holds-barred public fight was the best strategy. Their success has created a blueprint for advocates in other states who may want to adopt a similar approach. In this session, we talk to the driving forces behind the Virginia battle, review why they decided to take this fight public and what worked well for them – including taking advantage of CLIC’s support.  

Catharine Rice
- CLIC Project Director

Frank Smith
- President and CEO, Roanoke Valley Broadband Authority
Jennifer Eddy – Marketing Strategist, Eddy Communications Corp.

3:15-3:45 p.m.
Local Internet Choice and the Future of Work

CLIC’s keynote address will be delivered by Gary Bolles, a member of CLIC’s Board of Advisors and one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts on the future of work. Gary is the chairman of Singularity University’s Future of Work program. He is the co-founder of eParachute, the premier online resource for job-seekers, career changers and entrepreneurs going through LIFEwork transitions. He is also a partner in Charrette, which designs and produces strategic events for clients such as Google, Singularity University, London Business School and L’Oreal. In a world of rapidly accelerating automation, artificial intelligence and globalization, America faces no greater challenge than to provide our residents opportunities for fulfilling, well-paying and globally competitive work. Gary will discuss the role of local internet choice in meeting this challenge.

Jim Baller
- President, CLIC

Keynote Speaker:
Gary Bolles
- Chair, Singularity University Future of Work Program

3:45-4:00 p.m.

4:00-5:00 p.m.
Debunking the Myths about Community-Driven Broadband Initiatives

Over the last two decades, localities have had far more successes than setbacks with community broadband initiatives and public-private partnerships. Even so, opponents of local choice have persisted in claiming that such initiatives are unnecessary, are philosophically unacceptable, are doomed to fail, have unfair advantages, etc. This workshop will set the record straight, debunking the common myths about community-driven broadband projects and will shed a clearer light on why and how local choice has proven to be an essential ingredient for local economic, educational, social, health-care, and many other benefits that contribute to a high quality of life.

Chris Mitchell
- Director, Community Broadband Network, Institute for Local Self Reliance

Will Aycock
- General Manager, Greenlight, Wilson, NC
Lewis Foster - Broadband Manager, Columbia County Board of Commissioners, Evans, GA
Wes Kelley - President and CEO, Huntsville Utilities, Huntsville, Alabama
Harold DePriest - Former CEO & President, EPB, Chattanooga, TN
Grace Simrall - Chief of Innovation & Technology, Louisville, KY

5:00-5:15 p.m.
Wrap-up by Jim Baller and Joanne Hovis




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