Broadband bill to allow Montana municipalities to provide service gets hearing in House committee
“We are falling behind in our economy, and people are feeling it,” Kortum told the House Local Government Committee Tuesday afternoon. “Let’s give our towns the freedom to innovate and design broadband solutions that fit their unique needs.”
A Democratic priority this session, to boost high-speed internet infrastructure throughout the state, would allow local governments to partner with internet service providers to provide local internet coverage.
House Bill 422, sponsored by Rep. Kelly Kortum, a Bozeman Democrat, proposes a repeal of existing prohibitions on governments getting into the private ISP business.
States without restrictions enjoyed higher access to low-priced broadband plans on average.
Municipal Broadband Is Roadblocked Or Outlawed In 22 States States without municipal broadband restrictions have lower internet prices on average.
States without restrictions enjoyed higher access to low-priced broadband plans. Low-priced access data was taken from active internet plans in our database as of Q2 2020.
A new survey of economic development professionals suggests that more telehealth access and local control of broadband-related factors can give cities and counties an economic leg up.
“This law opens it up where we can get some new competitors into this field,” said Republican Sen. Ricky Hill, according to the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.
According to a 10-year study, the municipally owned broadband utility of Chattanooga, Tenn., has brought about economic benefits in the billions. The research could play an important role in future political debates.