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Kinzinger Introduces Legislation to Prohibit Government Interference in Broadband Internet Service Access

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Washington, June 4, 2015 | comments
Congressman Adam Kinzinger introduced the, “No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act."
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WASHINGTON – This morning, Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL) introduced the “No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act,” a simple one-sentence piece of legislation that would prohibit the Federal Communication Commission from regulating broadband rates.

“While Chairman Wheeler has stated that the FCC does not intend to regulate broadband internet access rates under his leadership, future Commissions still have the authority to insert their own mandates on rates,” said Kinzinger. “If we are to ensure that the government is not setting the rates we pay to use the internet, we must once and for all take that option off the table. Given no objection from Chairman Wheeler to such legislation, I have introduced the No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act.

The No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act is cosponsored by Committee on Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (MI),  Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden (OR), as well as Representatives Bob Latta (OH), John Shimkus (IL), Marsha Blackburn (TN), Steve Scalise (LA), Leonard Lance (NJ), Brett Guthrie (KY), Pete Olson (TX), Mike Pompeo (KS), Gus Bilirakis (FL), Bill Johnson (OH), Billy Long (MO), Renee Ellmers (NC), Chris Collins (NY), Kevin Cramer (ND), and  Joe Barton (TX).

Please click here for the PDF version of the No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act.


Background:

During the March 19, 2015 Communications and Technology Subcommittee FCC Reauthorization Oversight of the Commission hearing, Congressman Kinzinger brought up the issue of broadband rate regulation.

  • Congressman Kinzinger asked FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, “If legislation that said, ‘notwithstanding any provision of law, the Federal Communication Commission may not regulate the rates charged for broadband Internet access service, that would be consistent with that view?’”
  • Chairman Wheeler responded, “That is what we are trying to accomplish.”

During the May 12, 2015 Senate Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee FY16 Budget Request for the FCC hearing:

  • Subcommittee Chairman John Boozman (R-AR) asked Chairman Wheeler whether the open Internet order was supposed to open the door for rate regulation.
  • Chairman Wheeler responded, “Our goal is not to have rate regulation.”
  • The Senator then asked the Chairman, “Would you have objection to Congress prohibiting the FCC from regulating rate charges charged for broadband internet access including those for interconnect?”
  • Chairman Wheeler responded, “If Congress wants to come along and say that’s off the table for the next Commission, too, I have no difficulty with that.” 

 

 

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