More broadband hearings scheduled for next week

Congress continues to ask questions about the National Broadband Plan.

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) will chair a hearing by the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship on Tuesday to examine federal efforts to extend Internet access to small firms. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski is scheduled to testify, as is Department of Commerce Assistant Secretary Larry Strickling.

National Association of Broadcasters CEO Gordon Smith and CTIA CEO Steve Largent will also appear. So will American Cable Association Chairman Steve Friedman and CenturyLink Vice President Tom Gerke.

On Thursday, the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet will hold its hearing looking at the availability of devices that can serve as gateways to the Internet. The National Broadband Plan proposes using TV set-top boxes as primary avenues to get online, since most households have a TV set but not all households have computers.

This hearing was postponed earlier in the month.