Update: June 14, 2019 – Commenting on the bill he co-sponsored with Congresswoman Yvette Clarke to establish a Telecommunications Workforce Development Advisory Council, Congressman Tim Walberg said in a statement today, “As the telecom industry deploys next generation technologies, there are tens of thousands of good-paying, highly-skilled jobs but nobody to fill them. Developing a skilled workforce needs to be a top priority. By streamlining workforce development programs and promoting industry collaboration, we can free up resources for greater broadband deployment instead of recreating the same curriculum across the country.”
Congresswoman Clarke said, “Women and people of color are underrepresented in the telecom industry, which is why I am committed to drafting and supporting legislation that addresses this unacceptable reality. As a black woman, I know how capable women and people of color are which compelled me to lead a bipartisan effort to address the telecom industry’s workforce diversity shortage. I am excited to witness my fellow women and people of color who will act as trailblazers in bringing 5G to America.”
June 13, 2019 — A bill with bipartisan support to establish a Telecommunications Workforce Development Advisory Council within the FCC and identify ways to improve workforce expansion took a step closer to becoming a reality today with the introduction of the Tower Infrastructure Deployment Act in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Co-sponsored by Tim Walberg (R-MI) and Yvette Clarke (D-NY), the legislation, available here, recognizes the need for an advisory council that will be chartered to develop recommendations with respect to:
- The needs of the workforce in the communications industry to promote the deployment of communications facility installations;
- Ways to encourage participation in industry-led workforce development programs;
- Ways to improve workforce development in the communications industry.
The National Association of Tower Erectors (NATE) has been a key driver in supporting the bill that will assist its members and the industry at large.
Last month during a highly successful Washington D.C. fly-in, over 80 NATE members representing 32 states met with members of the 116th Congress and their assistants.
NATE representatives Todd Schlekeway, Jim Goldwater and Mike Young also met with Rep. Walberg’s telecom staff member Evan Viau to provide feedback on the legislation introduced this afternoon. Walberg spoke at the fly-in’s closing reception as well.
“NATE applauds the bipartisan leadership of U.S. Representatives Tim Walberg and Yvette Clarke in introducing the Tower Infrastructure Deployment Act in the U.S. House of Representatives,” said Legislative & Regulatory Affairs Director Jim Goldwater.
“NATE views this bipartisan legislation as another important vehicle to highlight the workforce needs of our diverse industry as we begin to ramp up for the protracted 5G deployment cycle. The Association stands ready to collaborate with members of Congress and the FCC to participate in the workforce development specific initiatives that emerge upon the passage of this bill,” said Goldwater.