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February 1, 2021

Osiene-Riggs Highlights Utility Broadband in National Energy Conference

UTC President and CEO Sheryl Osiene-Riggs discussed the multiple ways in which electric utilities can empower broadband deployment in a presentation last week.

Speaking during the U.S. Energy Association’s annual State of the Energy Industry event on Jan. 28, Ms. Osiene-Riggs also thanked energy and utility crews across the country for working to keep the lights on and water flowing during such challenging circumstances.

She pledged UTC’s support to work with the other energy organizations represented at the USEA event to ensure that utility crews are among the first to receive the coronavirus vaccine.

“I look forward to working with my colleagues at this conference to support any and all efforts aimed at ensuring that energy and utility workers are among the first to get the COVID-19 vaccines,” she said. “I know this is a top priority for everyone listening, so please know that UTC is with you as well.”

Regarding broadband, Ms. Osiene-Riggs highlighted utility efforts across the country to help connect all Americans to the internet. She noted that all utility types, from public power and electric cooperatives to investor-owned utilities (IOUs), can play a role.

She noted specific programs in Virginia, West Virginia, and elsewhere in which IOUs have established middle-mile programs to help smaller entities bring broadband services to unserved areas.

“Because utilities are investing in grid modernization technologies such as fiber and other communications infrastructure, hundreds of all kinds are also leveraging these investments to provide broadband services,” she said.

USEA is a Washington-based advocacy association representing energy providers of all kinds. Their State of the Energy Industry event is one of the first major energy conferences of the year and is highly attended by policymakers, regulators, and media.

Please contact the UTC Public Policy Team with any questions.

UTC Urges Virginia Regulators to Approve Dominion Broadband Program

UTC urged Virginia regulators to approve a middle-mile broadband program filed by core utility member Dominion Energy Virginia.

In a Jan. 25 letter, UTC President and CEO Sheryl Osiene-Riggs said the Dominion proposal would bring broadband services to an unserved part of the state at a time when millions of Americans are working and studying from home.

“Dominion Energy Virginia’s pilot program is precisely the kind of effort our nation needs to connect more Americans to the Internet,” Ms. Osiene-Riggs wrote. “UTC has worked closely with Dominion Energy Virginia to learn more about this effort and we urge this Commission to approval Dominion’s proposal.”

Ms. Osiene-Riggs filed the letter as part of the Virginia State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) hearing into whether it should approve Dominion Energy Virginia’s projects to build middle-mile fiber in certain unserved parts of the state.

In her letter, Ms. Osiene-Riggs noted that policymakers across the country recognize the key role utilities can play in bringing broadband service to unserved and underserved locations.

“There is a growing recognition within the industry that utilities can play key roles in facilitating broadband deployment, either through directly providing broadband to their customers or through middle-mile projects such as the one being proposed here by Dominion Energy Virginia,” she wrote.

Please contact the UTC Public Policy Team with any questions.

Upcoming Events

Calendar of UTC committee/division conference calls

Committee/Division calls

  • Feb. 9: UtiliSite Committee Call—For more information, contact Bob Lockhart
  • Feb. 9: Knowledge & Learning Committee Call—For more information, contact Bob Lockhart
  • Feb. 16: Utilities Broadband Committee Call—For more information, contact Brett Kilbourne
  • Feb. 17: IT/OT Committee Call—For more information, contact Bob Lockhart
  • Feb. 18: Public Policy Division Call–For more information, contact Rob Thormeyer
  • Feb. 18: Telecom Committee Call—For more information, contact Brett Kilbourne
  • Feb. 22: Security, Risk & Compliance Committee Call—For more information, contact Bob Lockhart