On March 15, CLIC joined a coalition of eleven nationally prominent private sector companies and associations in delivering a strongly worded letter denouncing Colorado’s Senate Bill 136 as “a virtual ban” on local Internet choice. If passed into law, SB 136 could significantly impair community broadband deployments or public-private broadband partnerships in Colorado.
“Communities in Colorado and across America are eager to work with willing established carriers, to enter into public-private partnerships with new entrants, to develop their own networks, if necessary, or to create other innovative means of acquiring affordable access to advanced communications capabilities, ” the letter emphasizes. “These are fundamentally local decisions that should be made by the communities themselves, through the processes that their duly elected and accountable local officials ordinarily use for making comparable decisions.” Local Colorado communities “should also be able to use their own resources as they deem appropriate to foster economic development, educational opportunity, public safety and much more, without having to comply with the restrictive bottlenecks that SB 136 would impose.”
The other signatories on the letter were the Atlantic Engineering Group, CTC Technology & Energy, the Fiber to the Home Council, Google, the Internet Association, NATOA, Netflix, Next Century Cities, OnTrac, the Telecommunications Industry Association, and the Utilities Telecom Council. Collectively, these organizations represent hundreds of municipalities and counties; the fiber industry; utilities of all kinds; scores private-sector telecommunications equipment companies, systems builders, and advisors; and major high-tech companies that depend on widespread, affordable broadband Internet connectivity, such as Amazon, Ebay, Etsy, Facebook, Pandora, Paypal, Reddit, Salesforce,Yahoo!, among others.