Author Archive

Kery Murakami

Senior Reporter

Kery Murakami
Kery Murakami is a senior reporter covering Congress and federal agencies for Route Fifty. A longtime reporter, he has covered state, city and county governments, as well as transportation, at newspapers like the Seattle Times, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and Newsday. In Washington, D.C, he has covered federal policy areas including broadband, healthcare and higher education.
Cloud & Infrastructure

Senators press FCC on map that will guide billions in broadband infrastructure funding

State and local officials and others have raised questions about the accuracy of the The Federal Communications Commission map and the process to make corrections to it.

Emerging Tech

$500M for new tech hubs program included in federal spending bill

A law to promote domestic semiconductor production approved earlier this year created the regional development program, but didn’t fund it. The proposed spending would enable its launch.

Cloud & Infrastructure

How the infrastructure act aims to take on digital discrimination

The FCC is considering adopting a set of recommendations for state and local governments that would address disparities in broadband service.

Cloud & Infrastructure

New state and local government financial reporting requirements headed to Biden’s desk

State and local advocates opposed the provisions, which were attached to a massive defense bill and call for financial data to be standardized, searchable and machine-readable.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Fears grow over plan to distribute billions in broadband dollars

State and local officials are raising alarm about what they say are major flaws with a federal map that will guide where the infrastructure money is sent. They want the Biden administration to extend a timeline for flagging the problems.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Congress moving ahead on new state and local government financial reporting rules

The new requirements, tacked on to a must-pass defense bill, call for financial data to be standardized, machine-readable and searchable. State and local advocates argue the plan is an “unfunded mandate” that will create significant costs.

Cloud & Infrastructure

New national broadband map offers granular look at service and gaps

The draft release kicks off a process where states, localities and the general public can challenge inaccuracies. The new data will be crucial in guiding how the federal government divides billions in broadband funding between states.

Public Safety

Local election officials brace for possible violence and threats

With worries over armed poll “monitors,” voter intimidation and risks to staff, some are coordinating with law enforcement or conducting special training ahead of Election Day.

Data & Analytics

Cities and states bristle over proposal to change how they report on finances

Congress is weighing a plan that calls for overhauling how state and local government financial data is made public, stirring worries about new costs for software and staff. But supporters of the revamp say it’s long overdue.

Cloud & Infrastructure

How much are people without high-speed internet willing to pay for it?

A new federal survey takes a look and finds that, for many who don’t have service because of the expense, the amount is $0.

Cloud & Infrastructure

New semiconductor law aims to create ‘Silicon Valleys’ across US

$10 billion in funding will go to support 20 research hubs with a third of them set to be in small or rural communities.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Why cities and towns see a huge economic opportunity in the semiconductor bill

As the legislation cleared the Senate on Wednesday, local leaders from tiny Taylor, Texas, to metropolitan Phoenix were eying the investment and jobs it could bring to their communities.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Deadlines approach for billions in broadband funding

The federal grant programs will support state and local efforts to expand high-speed internet access and improve digital equity.

Public Safety

State and local leaders call for overhaul of nation’s 911 system

A group that includes mayors, police chiefs and state officials want to rethink who should respond to calls for help.

Cloud & Infrastructure

States must ramp up to administer broadband funding

A new McKinsey report says states have a huge opportunity, but they will need a dedicated team to map existing broadband availability, address digital equity requirements and manage grants and funding.

Public Safety

Biden’s executive order on policing could help spur local reforms

The directive, which includes varied restrictions and alternatives, drew support from reform advocates as well as groups representing law enforcement officers and cities.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Biden administration official offers tips for tapping broadband funds

Andy Berke, a senior broadband advisor, spoke to state and local officials about $45 billion in pending federal money to expand high-speed internet service.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Biden administration releases $45B for broadband to states

Guidance for the infrastructure program says states must make affordable broadband available to the middle class, too, and cannot exclude cities from being considered for the funding.

Cloud & Infrastructure

Internet service essentially free for millions under new Biden program

With a discount already in place, 20 companies have agreed to offer service for $30 a month. Advocacy groups are hoping states will adopt similar pricing requirements. 

Data & Analytics

How data-driven policies can help states and localities

Officials say that following the numbers and looking at evidence has proven useful in tackling a range of equity issues and with steering clear of partisan fights.