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League Applauds FCC Ruling in Wilson Broadband Case

February 26, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 26, 2015
Contact: Scott Mooneyham
(919) 715-9768
smooneyham@nclm.org
                                                          
FCC Ruling a Win for Wilson, North Carolina Cities and Their  Residents
League of Municipalities Applauds Lifting of Community Broadband Restrictions 
 
(RALEIGH)  -- The North Carolina League of Municipalities and its 540 member cities and towns have strongly supported efforts to make high-speed broadband available to all North Carolinians and to give municipalities the decision-making authority to help make broadband access a reality for all residents. Today’s decision by the Federal Communications Commission in support of petitions filed by the City of Wilson and the City of Chattanooga (Tenn.) providing relief from state laws that restrict expansion of successful municipal-owned broadband systems is a victory for cities and towns across the state and country. More importantly, the ruling is a victory for their residents, who require access to high-speed broadband to compete in a global, 21st century economy.

 

The N.C. League of Municipalities opposed the 2011 state law that imposed roadblocks to that access and has supported the City of Wilson’s efforts before the FCC to have the law pre-empted, filing public comments in August in support of its petition.

NCLM Executive Director Paul Meyer released the following statement regarding the FCC’s decision:

“In today’s world, high-speed Internet service is not a luxury. Communities that do not have access to this critical infrastructure will be left at an economic disadvantage. Today’s ruling by the FCC recognizes the crucial need of businesses and residents to have available to them high-speed Internet access to promote educational attainment and bolster economic opportunities for all North Carolinians, whether the Last Mile provider is a municipal government or a private company.

“It is appropriate that individual municipalities have the tools and decision-making authority available to them to combat the vastly different challenges facing them. Although today’s decision by the FCC applies only to the City of Wilson, NC (and Chattanooga, TN), it provides an opportunity for the General Assembly to re-evaluate its 2011 decision, which limits economic opportunities in some areas of North Carolina by all but eliminating the ability of cities to deploy modern broadband networks in order to spur economic development.”
 
Read the NCLM’s public comments in support of the City of Wilson’s petition here.
 
About the League
The North Carolina League of Municipalities is a membership association of 540 great hometowns – representing nearly every municipality in the state. The League advocates for its members, from the largest city to the smallest village, on the full range of legislative issues that affect municipalities.
For more than 100 years, the League has promoted – and continues to promote – good government by offering non-partisan advocacy, insurance and other services – as directed by its membership.

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Posted on February 26, 2015 by Scott Mooneyham