Community Broadband Media Roundup- February 5


Wave sticks it to Comcast in Santa Maria, California, with muni broadband network by Dave Frankel, FierceCable

California’s net neutrality bill is vulnerable to legal attack, EFF says by Jon Brodkin, ArsTechnica



Fort Collins starts hiring process for broadband leadership by Nick Coltrain, The Coloradoan

Internet providers pitch municipal broadband partnerships to Loveland City Council by Julia Rentsch, Loveland Reporter-Herald

The Loveland City Council heard presentations from representatives of six internet providers during a study session Tuesday. The presentations were requested by a council rule of four Dec. 12 due to concerns about a pro-municipal broadband slant to the information they have received to date.

Members of the council and city staff said repeatedly that they want a deal that will tend to the needs of Loveland internet customers who say they are being underserved by incumbent companies. Some councilors have also cited concerns about the city entering the business and competing with those same providers.

In 2015, over 82 percent of Loveland voters approved a ballot measure that allowed the city to provide a retail fiber-to-the-premise broadband utility. The ballot question stipulated that the city cannot raise taxes to fund it.

Colorado lawmakers hope for 2018 solution on broadband for rural communities by Marianne Goodland, Colorado Springs Gazette

Do you want broadband fiber for Loveland, or the status quo? By John Fogle, Loveland Reporter-Herald



Muscatine Power and Water: Fiber optics should be completed by end of 2018 by Charles Potter, Muscatine Journal



Harvard report: Lafayette Fiber tops nation for saving customers money by Angie Simoneaux, KATC-3 ABC



Lawmakers Mount Federal Effort to Block Bans on Municipal Internet by Colin Woodard, Portland Press Herald (Government Technology)

Last year a legislative panel unanimously rejected a bill drafted by a secretive group that would have made it nearly impossible for communities to build their own high-speed Internet networks, even when cable and telephone companies declined to do so. Now, U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree is co-sponsoring legislation in Congress that aims to make sure there isn’t a repeat of the measure and to overturn laws passed in recent years in 17 other states.

“We should be rolling out the red carpet to communities that are trying to meet the big challenge of having high-speed Internet, rather than have the state try to restrict them on behalf of the big utilities and cable companies,” said Pingree, a Democrat who represents Maine’s 1st District. “It seems very anti-American and anti-entrepreneurial spirit.”


North Carolina

The Fight for High-Speed Internet Continues in Burlington, N.C. by Bill Cresenzo, Burlington Times-News (Government Technology)



Broadband access still lacking in region by Janelle Patterson, Marietta Times


Rhode Island

R.I. lawmakers enter ‘net neutrality’ battle by Katherine Gregg & Patrick Anderson, Providence Journal



Marsha Blackburn on wrong side of net neutrality debate by Dan Hogan, The Tennessean

Scott County Co-op gets $1.9M to install broadband in Hawkins County by WYCB Newsroom

Tri-County receives $1.35 million in broadband grant by Chris Gregory, Hartsville Vidette



Rural co-ops and a path to broadband access by Go Dan Editorial Board

And it’s on that peg that leaders of the Central Virginia Electric Cooperative (CVEC), based in the Nelson County community of Arrington, believe they’ve found a way to address the biggest challenge facing rural America in 2018: the unavailability of access to broadband internet services.

We have argued many times that broadband access is as critical an issue for rural America today as electrification was 80 years ago. Broadband access, with speeds surpassing 100 Mbps and more, is rarely given a second thought in a city like Lynchburg or Danville. But in surrounding counties, thousands of residents can only dream of such access.

That’s why the CVEC board of directors recently voted to form a subsidiary to do what its own predecessor did in 1937 with electricity: constructing broadband on-ramps for members in its 14-county service area.


West Virginia

12 state broadband programs share $1.5 million, Taylor County awarded $125K by Westy Marks, West Virginia News



The FCC Hopes its Empty Dedication to Rural Broadband Will Make You Forget it Killed Net Neutrality by Karl Bode, Motherboard Vice

Since taking office, Pai has routinely insisted that his top priority is closing the digital divide and improving broadband speed and availability. Unfortunately, for those stuck without adequate broadband, his actual policies often undermine this goal.

Since taking office, Pai has eroded programs that bring broadband to the poor, gutted media consolidation rules, helped dismantle broadband privacy protections, killed efforts to bring more competition to the cable box, rushed to the defense of prison monopoly price gouging, passed rules protecting business broadband monopolies, and gutted net neutrality.

And he’s only getting started.

Deeper Dive—Is Comcast now working with conservative think tanks to astroturf muni broadband? By Daniel Frankel, Fierce Cable

What Is Community-Built Broadband? By DariusZ, The Merkle