Casting a Wider ‘Net: How and Why State Laws Restricting Municipal Broadband Networks Must Be Modified

One of Congress’s purposes in passing the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was to encourage the widespread deployment of broadband Internet. As municipalities began constructing their own broadband networks, private sec-tor Internet service providers, alarmed at the prospect of competing with these public networks, pushed back with lobbying campaigns encouraging states to enact laws prohibiting these municipal networks.