Friday, February 28, 2020

Thune Introduces Bi-Partisan 5G Skilled Workforce Act

Sen. John Thune (R-SD), the chamber’s number two Republican and chairman of the Senate Commerce telecom subcommittee, unveiled his Telecommunications Skilled Workforce Act Thursday. The measure is aimed at helping the U.S. catch up on the workforce demands of the 5G era. Thune's bill is bipartisan. Co-sponsors are Jon Tester (D-MT), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Gary Peters (D-MI) and Roger Wicker (R-MS). 

On the Senate floor, Thune said, “Current internet technology relies on cell phone towers. But 5G technology will require not just traditional cell phone towers, but small antennas called ‘small cells’ that can often be attached to existing infrastructure like utility poles or buildings.”

Wireless providers will need to install roughly 800,000 small cells to support a nationwide 5G network, according to Thune. “And of course, after installation, every one of those small cells will have to be monitored and maintained. That will require a substantial increase in the telecommunications workforce.” Continue Reading

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