Internet Association Files Amicus In Support of FCC Municipal Broadband Order
Slater: “Access to broadband Internet is an essential tool in our daily lives, and yet an estimated 55 million Americans lack access. Broadband Internet access is to today’s Americans what access to electricity was in a previous era.”
Washington, D.C. – Today, the Internet Association filed an amicus brief in U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit in support of the FCC’s orders supporting local communities’ efforts to bring broadband to their citizens. The states of North Carolina and Tennessee ask the court to prevent the Commission from executing its statutory obligation to promote broadband services and remove barriers to broadband deployment.
“Access to residential broadband Internet is an essential tool in our daily lives, and yet an estimated 55 million Americans lack access. Broadband Internet access is to today’s Americans what access to electricity was in a previous era. The Internet Association supports the FCC as well as the local communities that are protecting the right to invest in their future,” said Abigail Slater, Internet Association Vice President of Legal and Regulatory Policy.
From the Internet Association amicus brief:
“It is not surprising, therefore, that the Commission decided to grant the petitions of the Electric Power Board of Chattanooga (“EPB”), Tennessee, in whole, and the City of Wilson, North Carolina, in part. Those decisions represent a step toward broadband abundance. In urging this Court to reverse the Commission’s decision, Petitioners and their amici ask the Court to take a step in the opposite direction, toward retrenchment, even in the face of the startling evidence regarding the state of broadband deployment and competition in America. We urge the Court to deny the petitions.”
There is limited competition in the high-speed broadband market. The FCC’s 2015 Broadband Progress Report found that 55 million Americans lack access to broadband Internet.
“Nearly one in five Americans does not have the option of accessing broadband services. A full 45 percent of Americans have access to only one provider of broadband services. This means that the majority of the population in the United States either lacks access, or has access to only one provider of broadband services,” the brief states.
To read the full amicus, click here.