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CPUC Comments on FCC Ending Net Neutrality Protections

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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted last week to repeal net neutrality rules that require Internet service providers to treat websites and online services equally. In essence, the FCC's rollback means that Internet service providers can control Internet traffic and have the ability to charge certain websites for faster download speeds. 

 

In July and August 2017, the CPUC submitted comments in response to the FCC's Notice of Rulemaking that resulted in Thursday's FCC decision. The CPUC urged the FCC to keep the non-discriminatory rules adopted in 2015, which are consistent with California's continued efforts to promote fairness in the telecommunications market.

 

The CPUC further urged the FCC to ensure States' abilities to promote competition and advance universal service in the telecommunications market, preserve public safety, and ensure the continued quality of telecommunications services. The CPUC's comments raised concerns regarding possible consequences to the federal Lifeline program, utility pole safety, consumer privacy rights, and access to the Internet by persons with disabilities.

 

Shortly after the FCC's vote on Thursday, California state senator Scott Wiener announced that he intends to introduce legislation that would require net neutrality rules in California.

 

"Repeal of net neutrality is egregious because it leaves customers without protections - it's a disservice for democracy," said CPUC Commissioner Martha Guzman Aceves.

 

The CPUC  continues to be committed to the notion that consumers should have fair and equal access to the Internet.

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