FCC

FCC Won't Appeal Muni Broadband Decision

Cities will have to take up fight, but Wheeler has signaled he would help 8/29/2016 1:25 PM Eastern

The FCC will not challenge the court decision overturning its pre-emption of state laws limiting municipal broadband buildouts.

 

"The FCC will not seek further review of the Sixth Circuit's decision on municipal broadband after determining that doing so would not be the best use of Commission resources," an FCC spokesman said, confirming a comment provided to The New York Times.  

 

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler had already signaled his help would probably come via the bully pulpit rather than appeals court. Wheeler, in opining on the court loss, said he would be happy to help an effort to repeal state laws.

 

“Should states seek to repeal their anti-competitive broadband statutes, I will be happy to testify on behalf of better broadband and consumer choice,” he said.

 

Related: Next Steps Pondered After Muni Broadband Ruling

 

The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals concluded recently that the FCC’s authority to promote advanced telecommunications deployment in a reasonable and timely manner did not extend to deciding whether a state or its municipal subdivision gets to control broadband buildouts, unless Congress has explicitly granted the FCC that power.

 

The push for muni broadband will likely move to the states, with cities attempting to get laws limiting broadband buildouts repealed.

 

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