Connecticut is doing their best to protect net neutrality laws.
Even before, Connecticut had been considering opposing the repeal of net neutrality law which aimed to block telecom companies which hamper the web traffic and internet speed to prioritize some contents, apps or services.
Aside from Democratic leader Bob Duff, other Democratic leaders, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, for one is being encouraged by State Comptroller Kevin Lembo to have net neutrality provisions in the state contract the same as with the five other governors who required the same to the internet providers. Although opinions differ if Connecticut still has to take part of this federal debate.
Lawmakers from different states, who are in opposition to the administration’s killing net neutrality law, were told to stop their attempts yet democratic lawmakers in Connecticut don’t believe that traditional net neutrality rules should be abolished.
When Washington passed the legislation to protect net neutrality law, some were thinking that Connecticut can be the next state. ACLU gave some points to consider why Connecticut and the other states should protect net neutrality: (1) the access of the public to free information and communication are key to democracy, (2) advocacies for social causes can be controlled by internet providers as they can block contents, slow down traffic, or charge more to websites or services that providers disagree, (3) the open internet can often stimulate learning as educators use websites and apps as tool, (4) to extend better healthcare services, (5) businesses in Connecticut could suffer from losses without net neutrality law to protect them.
To act in support of the reasons stated, Connecticut passed two bills to protect net neutrality laws: H.B. 5260 requires internet providers to adhere to net neutrality regulations in state contracts; while S.B. 2 is an act to uphold net neutrality principles geared to protect consumers from the FCC decision.
On March 29, the bill, proposed by Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff, should have established net neutrality law to take effect in the state. The Connecticut General Assembly bill, however, was put to a halt. The lawmaker was considering the effectivity of the repeal which was said to take place on April 23. The Democratic lawmakers are still upholding net neutrality law in the state and is concerned about what effect could this repeal bring to Connecticut citizens.
Connecticut’s Energy and Technology Committee tried to consider the bill to have the power to regulate their own internet rule, the first step in upholding the right to prevent fast lanes that FCC had voted to abolish last December. However, one Republican co-chairman, Senator Paul Formica elected to adopt a rule and ensure that the bill wouldn’t have an appropriate vote.
Connecticut Post reported that even though Democrats were able to hold the majority seat in the overall committee, still it’s tied in the Senate. Two Senate Democrats and Two Senate Republicans end up in a tie so the law won’t be able to advance for consideration by the representatives in the House.
Democratic Senator Gary Winfield regretted that the bill won’t be able to take a shot at being voted. While Senator Majority Leader Duff exclaimed it’s a pity that Senate Republicans of the state chose to fight with the administration and the big businesses and overlook consumer’s protection.
The citizens would be waiting for updates because it is deemed important to know if the state could go against the administration’s push to abolish net neutrality principles.