Rep. Eshoo Introduces Legislation to Empower Local Community Broadband Decisions

  • Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18) introduced the Community Broadband Act of 2016, legislation preserving the right of local communities to provide community-owned broadband service to consumers. Introduction of the bill comes after a ruling from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in August striking down a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Order preempting state laws in North Carolina and Tennessee restricting service from community broadband providers.

“I’m disappointed that a recent court ruling blocked the FCC’s efforts to allow local communities to decide for themselves how best to ensure that their residents have broadband access,” Eshoo said. “This legislation clears the way for local communities to make their own decisions instead of powerful special interests in state capitals.”

“Rather than restricting local communities in need of broadband, we should be empowering them to make the decisions they determine are in the best interests of their constituents. Too many Americans still lack access to quality, affordable broadband and community broadband projects are an important way to bring this critical service to more citizens.”

Eshoo’s legislation is modeled on a bipartisan bill introduced by Senators Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and John McCain (R-AZ) in 2005. The text of the Community Broadband Act of 2016 can be found here.

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