Thursday, August 12, 2010

State Legislators Oppose FCC's Plans to Re-label and Regulate Internet

/PRNewswire/ -- The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) voices its opposition to plans by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to change the status of broadband Internet Service from a lightly-regulated "information service" to a more heavily regulated "telecommunications service."

At its meeting late last week, ALEC's Telecommunications & Information Technology Task Force approved its ALEC Broadband Regulation Resolution. The Resolution declares ALEC's opposition to the FCC's controversial plan to subject broadband Internet service to a handful of older monopoly-era telephone regulations.

Today the Resolution was delivered to the FCC along with a letter by Connecticut State Representative Bill Hamzy, who serves as Public Sector Chair of ALEC's Telecom & IT Task Force. In the letter, the state legislator insists the agency should back off from its controversial plan to subject broadband Internet to heavier regulatory burdens.

"ALEC supports the continuation of federal policies that have kept the Internet free from government regulation. Marketplace freedom has encouraged the explosive growth of the Internet and e-commerce in recent years. It would be a grave mistake for the FCC to suddenly reverse course and saddle the Internet with burdensome new regulation. ALEC remains concerned that attempts by federal regulators to impose new restrictions on broadband Internet service will hurt technological innovation, deter private infrastructure investment, and threaten job growth in the states," said Representative Hamzy.

As declared in the Resolution, "ALEC urges that the FCC, Congress and state regulatory and legislative bodies refocus their efforts on specific and limited initiatives targeted at ensuring that broadband service is made universally available and affordable to consumers, rejecting overly prescriptive regulations that would harm innovation, investment, and job growth."

In January, over 90 other state legislators submitted a letter to the FCC opposing its plans to impose net neutrality regulation. In 2007, ALEC adopted a Resolution on Net Neutrality, opposing federal and state regulation of network management practices.

The American Legislative Exchange Council is the nation's largest nonpartisan, individual membership organization of state legislators.

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