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North Carolina
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on May 22, 2015

North Carolina Files Petition Opposing FCC Ruling to End Anti-Muni Laws

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/north-carolina-files-petition-opposing-fcc-ruling-to-end-anti-muni-laws/

It took a while, but the State of North Carolina finally decided to take its turn at the throat of the FCC. Attorneys filed a Petition for Review in the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals similar to the one filed by the State of Tennessee in March. The Petition is available for download below.

Our official comment:

“Attorney General Cooper must not realize the irony of using state taxpayer dollars to ensure less money is invested in rural broadband, but we certainly do,” says Christopher Mitchell with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. “State leaders should stand up for their citizens’ interests and demand good broadband for them, rather than fighting alongside paid lobbyists to take away those opportunities.”

Like Tennessee, North Carolina makes an attempt to stop the FCC’s well-considered Opinion and Order by arguing that the FCC overstepped its authority in violation of the Consitution. The FCC addressed this argument in its Opinion and Order along with a myriad of other potential arguments. For detailed coverage of the FCC’s well-considered decision, we provided information on highlightsof the decision back in March.

According to WRAL, Wilson is taking the new development in stride:

The City of Wilson was not surprised that North Carolina sued.

“We are aware of the suit,” said Will Aycock, who manages the Greenlight network. “We knew that this would be an ongoing process.”

The Attorney general’s has not contacted Wilson about the suit, he added.

We have to wonder if North Carolina is a bit embarrassed in arguing that rural areas should not be allowed to build their own networks even as the metro regions in Charlotte and the Triangle are seeing gigabit investment. State elected officials in North Carolina seem committed to two-tier Internet access: fast for the metro and stiflingly slow in rural regions.

“Wilson filed this petition [last year to restore local authority] not with immediate plans to expand into its rural neighboring communities, but to facilitate the future advancement of its critical Gigabit fiber-optic infrastructure over the long term.”…Wilson does not expect to incur any legal costs related to the North Carolina suit, Aycock said. “We told our story,” he explained.

Unfortunately, this is another example of big telecom dollars asserting influence over  state leaders. Wilson’s Greenlight has proven itself over and over again to be an economic development tool, a way for the municipality to save precious public dollars, and an agent to encourage better connectivity for citizens.

connecticut
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on May 10, 2015

Video Available: Connecticut Gigabit State Event

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/video-available-connecticut-gigabit-state-event/

On May 5th, Christopher participated in a panel conversation presented by the City of New Haven and the Connecticut Office of Consumer Counsel. Video of the event,Moving Towards A Gigabit State: Planning & Financing Municipal Ultra-High-Speed Internet Fiber Networks Through Public-Private Partnerships, is now available. You can watch it from the Connecticut Network website. The… Continue reading

Leverett-Massachusetts
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Apr 20, 2015

Leverett Starts to Light Up in Massachusetts

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/leverett-starts-to-light-up-in-massachusetts/

The celebrated municipal network in Leverett, Massachusetts, is starting to serve select areas of the community. Customers’ properties on the north side of town are now receiving 1 gigabit Internet service from the town’s partner Crocker Communications. These early subscribers are considered “beta sites.” Telephone service will become available when the network has been fully… Continue reading

CharlesBentonBW1b
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on May 1, 2015

Charles Benton, Champion of the Public Interest in Telecom, Passes

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/charles-benton-champion-of-the-public-interest-in-telecom-passes/

The world of media education, communication policy, and philanthropy is mourning the loss of Charles Benton who passed away on April 29. He lived a long life encouraging and empowering individuals and communities to use technology to improve their quality of life. But beyond that, specifically working to remove barriers that discourage historically marginalized communities… Continue reading

comcastic day
Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Apr 9, 2015

Tale of Comcast Woe

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/tale-of-comcast-woe/

Ideally, working from home allows one to choose the environment where he or she can be most productive. In the case of Seth that was Kitsap County in Washington State. Unfortunately, incompetence on the part of Comcast, CenturyLink, and official broadband maps led Seth down a road of frustration that will ultimately require him to… Continue reading