Many government systems can be replaced by modern upgrades with zero incremental spectrum footprint above the commercial and private systems on which the highly productive civilian sector depends. Look at FirstNet.
Transferring spectrum from old to new users have proven to be much speedier and easier than imagined by PCAST and similar plans of 10 – 15 years ago. Getting governments and government agencies to cooperate is the harder problem.
The only way through our 1,200 year drought is get better at managing and using water than we have been. While RF spectrum isn’t in a similar crisis yet, it’s wise to prepare for an eventuality where demand far outstrips supply. Spectrum, like water, is a finite resource at each point in time even if both are reusable.
It goes without saying that US regulatory performance on the 5G mid-band and aviation is well below the international standard. Dickson was a poor choice when the former president appointed him, and he hasn’t grown into the job. A balanced hearing would show this.
The priority for Congress in the Wednesday hearing to to draw a bright line between network projects in legitimate need of federal support for construction, technical capacity development, and backhaul and those, like Loveland, that are simply vanity projects.
The way forward is to prioritize urgent needs over long term visions. In cases where a new wireline network is the only solution that will get a rural community online, of course that network needs to be all fiber and potentially symmetrical. But such cases are rare.