The Connecticut legislature's Planning and Development Committee rejected a proposal (SB 331) that called for $5 million in state seed money to fund a government-run loan program available to municipalities interested in constructing their own Internet infrastructure networks.

Municipalities would then charge Internet subscribers a fee for use of the network in order to pay back the loan.

The bill failed on a 9-11 committee vote, with two legislators abstaining or absent.

There were many problems with the proposal, including:

  • A lack of recognition that constructing and maintaining that kind of network would require tens of millions of dollars--much of which likely would have to be borne by taxpayers
  • A lack of technical and engineering expertise at the municipal level to keep the systems running, and upgraded enough to integrate with private-sector-operated high-speed Internet, where investment and innovation are constant
  • A misunderstanding that private-sector high-speed Internet is already available to Connecticut municipalities from nationally recognized high-speed Internet service providers

CBIA appreciates those on the committee who voted to reject the proposal.

For more information, contact CBIA’s Eric Brown (860.244.1926) | @CBIAericb