Illinois Joins the Ranks of the Crazy, Allows Statewide Franchising

Despite a few concessions calling for compensation for missed/late appointments, limiting service contracts to one year and requiring some deployment to poorer neighborhoods, Illinois pretty much handed the telecom industry a license to cherry-pick service areas with little in return. This bill, more-or-less purchased outright by AT&T, is the latest in a dose of crazy talk that gives a lying and monopolistic industry free reign to bypass cities it doesn't feel like serving and bring benefits only to wealthy and upper-middle class neighborhoods while bypassing "less desirable" areas. Aside from the minor concessions, the silver lining is that municipalities are allowed to build their own networks, potentially filling the gap left in AT&T's wake.

Utah recently made a narrow escape from the lunacy of state-wide franchising when SB 209 stalled in the last hours of the 2007 legislative session. It did pass the Senate, however, so it's important you make sure that your representatives in the Senate and House know that you don't want state-wide franchising in Utah. Not only would poorer areas like Rose Park be completely bypassed, but rural towns would also receive little to no benefit.

(See full articles here and here.)

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2 Responses to Illinois Joins the Ranks of the Crazy, Allows Statewide Franchising

  1. Andrea says:

    I hear UTOPIA is doing the same thing by deciding to wait until "later" to build out WVC.

  2. Jesse says:

    West Valley City was delayed so that UTOPIA could apply for and obtain federal rural broadband grants to complete the build-out in Brigham City and Tremonton. It was a good move that reduced the cost of construction for the project considerably, netting $66M from the USDA.

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