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Press Release: Colorado Communities Set to Reclaim Local Authority via Broadband Ballot Referenda, Rebuff Internet Access Monopolies
Date: November 6th, 2017
Colorado Communities Set to Reclaim Local Authority, Rebuff Internet Access Monopolies
18 communities across the state will vote to join nearly 100 of their fellows in investigating Internet infrastructure investments
Christopher Mitchell, firstname.lastname@example.org
MINNEAPOLIS, MINN -- Tomorrow, 18 communities across Colorado will be voting to reclaim their local authority to end broadband monopolies. Since 2008, nearly 100 communities across Colorado have opted out of a restrictive state law (SB 152) which limits the ability of Coloradans to explore high-speed municipal broadband. This year is no different.
We at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance have a full list of those voting on the opt out measures. Additionally Fort Collins, who opted out of SB 152 in the fall of 2015, has a ballot referendum to establish a municipal utility that offers high-speed Internet service. We’ll be following that closely as well.
“These ballot initiatives are a crucial step toward better Internet access throughout Colorado,” says Christopher Mitchell, director of the Community Broadband Networks initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. “Local governments are smart to reclaim the authority they need to ensure local businesses and residents aren’t stuck with cable monopolies.”
Communities across Colorado have long benefited from municipal networks. Cortez has brought real competition to its local businesses. Longmont has one of the lowest priced, highest quality services in the nation. Rural Rio Blanco has fiber optic and wireless connections that have brought a real choice in high quality Internet access to much of a very rural county. Many more communities are exploring the opportunities that a municipal network offers, including those who voted last November (all of whom passed their measures). Here’s our map of last year’s voting communities:
If you're interested in gaining perspective on this issue from Christopher Mitchell, please email back here or schedule an interview through Nick Stumo-Langer at 612-844-1330.
About Christopher Mitchell:
Christopher Mitchell is the Director of the Community Broadband Networks initiative with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. Mitchell leads the acclaimed MuniNetworks.org as part of ILSR's effort to ensure broadband networks are directly accountable to the communities that depend upon them. He is a leading national expert on community networks, advising high-ranking broadband decision-makers and speaking on radio and television programs across the United States.
FOR MORE INFORMATION and to schedule an interview with Christopher, call Nick Stumo-Langer at 612-844-1330 or email email@example.com.
Not only has the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic exposed our nation’s dire lack of medical equipment and protective gear, but it has also shone a light on the inadequacy of our rural broadband networks.
MINNEAPOLIS, MINN. (April 24, 2020) - The Federal Communications Commission has concluded that broadband is being deployed “on a reasonable and timely basis” across America.
Christopher Mitchell, Director of the Community Broadband Networks initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, recently appeared on Broadband Breakfast Live Online on March 31 to discuss the impacts of the pandemic in the broadband sector. Along with Christopher, the panel discussion was joined by host Drew Clark, Editor and Publisher at Broadband Breakfast, Gigi Sohn from Benton Institute for Broadband and Society, and Ben Bawtree-Jobson, CEO of SiFi Networks. The panelists explained policies to support universal broadband access, shared issues with telehealth, and suggested short-term solutions to bridge the homework gap.
Katie Kienbaum, Research Associate at ILSR, wrote an op-ed that the Orlando Sentinel published on March 5, 2020.
On February 17, Christopher Mitchell spoke on Wisconsin Public Radio's "Central Time" about the need for broadband access in unserved areas and how communities have taken a different approach to increase reliable and affordable Internet access. The discussion also touches on funding program, which is an important factor for local providers to expand broadband infrastructure in rural areas.