[Chtechcomm] Broadband Investment and Consumer Choice Act pending Federal legislation

Terri Buckner tbuckner at ibiblio.org
Tue Aug 2 09:58:11 EDT 2005

John McCain is also sponsoring Senate Bill 1294, an amendment to the 
Telecommunications Act of 1996, that will "preserve and protect the 
ability of local governments to provide broadband capability and 
services." The clear contradiction between these two bills sponsored by 
the same individual is confusing and deserves more investigation. For 
links to S 1294 and a concise review of Community Internet initiatives, 
see http://www.freepress.net/communityinternet/.

The original Telecommunications Act as well the 1996 revisions have 
failed to achieve their intended purposes of making cable services more 
competitive, rather than regulated. The merging of technology, 
specifically the Internet, and broadcast media is further confusing that 
purpose. Big business vs open government vs knowledge economy...a debate 
that will rage on for several more years.

I continue to believe that Chapel Hill should act quickly to put some 
kind of municipal network in place as a contingency measure. In this 
case, haste might avoid wasted opportunity.


Gregg Gerdau wrote:
is one of the better links, in my opinion, to information and analysis 
of the Broadband Investment and Consumer Choice Act that was introduced 
by Senators Ensign and McCain on July 27th.  While there will be much 
written about the loss of cable franchise fees (and the franchises 
themselves) contemplated by this legislation, most disappointing is "A 
state or local government seeking to provide a communications service 
must give notice of and permit non-government entities to bid to provide 
such service – preference is to be given to non-government entities. 
Existing government owned network offerings are grandfathered." which 
doesn't appear to be good news for municipal wi-fi projects.

Thanks to Bob Avery and Chad Johnston for the initial information. 
Please share your further thoughts and additional links on this subject.


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