TOPEKA (KSNT) – City officials say Topeka is teaming up with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to talk broadband access later this week.

City of Topeka spokeswoman Gretchen Spiker said in a press release that a joint listening session for stakeholder agencies will be held, courtesy of Topeka and the FCC, to discuss the topic of broadband access on Thursday. This is part of a push by the FCC to gain more information from different communities across the U.S. as to what challenges they are facing when trying to access broadband services.

Broadband access is under discussion across the U.S., from the highest levels of our government to the Capital City of Kansas. Debate is focused on whether or not broadband should be seen as essential, such as access to water or electricity.

In August, a five year action plan was submitted to expand high-speed internet access in Kansas. This came after previous efforts to expand high-speed internet access across the Sunflower State.

Spiker said the upcoming broadband meeting in Topeka is part of Digital Inclusion Week. Topeka Mayor Mike Padilla‘s office will issue a statement in recognition of the occasion which will be read by Deputy Mayor Neil Dobler.

Spiker said representatives from around 40 federal, state and local government agencies, along with nonprofits, will be in attendance for the meeting. These include members of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), Kansas Office of Broadband Development (KOBD) and others.

Although the upcoming meeting is primarily meant for stakeholders, Spiker said all members of the public are welcome to attend. Those wanting to participate in person need to RSVP with Monique Glaudé by sending an email to by noon on Wednesday, Oct. 4. The meeting will be held on Oct. 5 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Sunflower Foundation at 5820 SW Sixth Avenue.

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