Lawmakers Introduce Legislation to Increase Broadband Access in Local Communities

Representatives Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA), Mike Doyle (D-PA), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Ro Khanna (D-CA), Beto O’Rourke (D-TX), Mark Pocan (D-WI), and Jared Polis (D-CO) introduced the Community Broadband Act, legislation that will empower local communities to ensure their residents have broadband access by preserving the right to provide community-owned service to consumers. According to the Congressional Research Service, twenty states have passed laws that either restrict or outright prohibit local communities from investing local dollars in building their own broadband networks. These laws shield incumbent internet service providers from competition and tie the hands of communities that want to improve broadband options or build-out to unserved areas which private providers refuse to connect. A recent study from Harvard University found that in nearly all cases, community-owned ISPs’ pricing were lower than the incumbent ISPs – sometimes by as much as 50%. The Community Broadband Act prohibits states from writing laws that inhibit local governments from building their own broadband, preserving the local right to self-determination in connecting communities.


Lawmakers Introduce Legislation to Increase Broadband Access in Local Communities