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Featured Article, ILSR Press Room filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Jun 27, 2014

ILSR applauds U.S. Lawmakers banding together to support Community Broadband Networks.

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/ilsr-applauds-u-s-senators-banding-support-community-broadband-networks/

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Rebecca Toews 612-808-0689 – Rebecca@ilsr.org

Minneapolis, MN — The Institute for Local Self-Reliance praises Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken of Minnesota for leading the growing list of organizations committed to defending the authority of communities to make their own decisions when it comes to build the Internet networks of tomorrow.

The senators, along with Senators Richard Blumenthal (CT), Cory Booker, (NJ) Representatives Mike Doyle (PA), Anna Eshoo (CA), and Henry Waxman (CA) signed a strong letter to FCC chairman Tom Wheeler Friday, announcing their support of the chairman’s decision to remove state barriers to municipal networks. Some 20 states currently limit local authority to build networks even when the incumbent firms refuse to upgrade to modern services.

The senators join together with these organizations, which already support the right to build community networks:

  • American Public Power Association (APPA)
  • National Conference of Mayors (NCM)
  • Coalition for Local Internet Choice (CLIC)
  • National League of Cities (NLC)
  • National Association of Counties (NACo)
  • National Association of Telecommunications Officers (NATOA)

“High quality Internet access is essential for jobs and education,” says Christopher Mitchell, director of Community Broadband Networks at the Institute. “But big cable and telephone companies have pushed state laws to limit competition, even in areas where they will not invest.”

In a recent blog post, Chairman Wheeler announced his support for community networks: “The facts speak for themselves: competition works – when it is allowed to. Throughout the country where we have seen competitive broadband providers come in to a market, prices have gone down and broadband speeds have gone up. No wonder incumbent broadband providers want to legislate rather than innovate.”

The Congressional letter to FCC Chair Wheeler asks him to respond with his plans to “make progress on community broadband.”

For more information: Contact Rebecca Toews (Rebecca@ILSR.org) and visit www.muninetworks.org.

ABOUT ILSR

We believe we make better and more informed policies when those who design those policies are those who feel their impact.

ILSR works with citizens, activists, policymakers and entrepreneurs to provide them with innovative strategies and working models that support environmentally sound and equitable economic policies and community development. Since 1974, ILSR has championed local self-reliance, a strategy that underscores the need for humanly scaled institutions and economies and the widest possible distribution of ownership.

ABOUT CHRISTOPHER MITCHELL

Christopher Mitchell is the Director of the Community Broadband Networks Initiative with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.

Mitchell leads the acclaimed MuniNetworks.org as part of ILSR’s effort to ensure broadband networks are directly accountable to the communities that depend upon them.

He is a leading national expert on community networks, advises high-ranking broadband decision-makers, speaks on radio and television programs in markets across the United States, and frequently presents at telecommunications policy events around the world.

Mitchell, the author of Santa Monica City Net: An Incremental Approach to Building a Fiber Optic Network and Minnesota Local Governments Advance Super Fast Networks, has been at the center of the battle to help more than 400 cities lead the way in offering the nation’s fastest and least expensive telecommunications services. “We know community broadband networks work and we know they are a key to vibrant modern local economies.”

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Featured Article, ILSR Press Room, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Mar 19, 2014

Minnesota Local Governments Advance Super Fast Internet Networks

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/minnesota-local-governments-advance-super-fast-internet-networks/

As in much of rural America, communities in Greater Minnesota struggle with connectivity. Some areas have no choice at all, forced to rely on dial-up or slow DSL. Others have an incumbent cable provider. A few local community leaders in Minnesota, conscious of the need for broadband to save public dollars, encourage economic development, and… Continue reading

Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on May 21, 2014

Chris Mitchell to Speak at “Localism Over Consolidation: An Exploration of Public Broadband Options”

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/chris-mitchell-speak-localism-consolidation-exploration-public-broadband-options/

New America Foundation’s Open Technology Institute will host “Localism Over Consolidation: An Exploration of Public Broadband Options” from 9:30-11:30 am on May 28th. Chris will be participating in the discussion; if you can’t make it to DC, the event will be live-streamed. The conversation will focus on different approaches to improve connectivity and community strategies… Continue reading

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Featured Article, ILSR Press Room, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Mar 5, 2014

Santa Monica City Net: An Incremental Approach to Building a Fiber Optic Network

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/santa-monica-city-net/

Santa Monica has built a fiber network called City Net that has lowered its own costs for telecommunications, helped to retain businesses, and attracted new businesses to the community. Built incrementally without debt, it offers a roadmap any community can draw lessons from. Unlike the majority of municipal fiber networks, Santa Monica does not have… Continue reading

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Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | 1 Comment | Updated on May 19, 2014

Westminster Budgets for Open Access Network

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/westminster-budgets-for-open-access-fiber-network/

On Monday, May 12, Westminster moved another step closer to deploying its open access citywide fiber network in Maryland. The Common Council approved a FY15 budget that includes $6.3 million for an FTTH network. The Carroll County Times reported that the $64.8 million budget was adopted 5-1. The opposing Council Member voted no on a different issue. Last summer, the community… Continue reading