Too many local governments look at their business permitting processes – as opportunities to gouge the companies simply trying to provide goods and services to the people who live there.
This is certainly the case with companies that provide Internet access.
As we diligently work to ensure everyone in America is connected – and win the global race to 5G wireless connectivity – it is stupid to allow greedy governments to bleed billions of dollars of prospective investment away from new buildout.
Localities can recover their buildout expenses. Localities can make a little bit on top.
Localities can not be allowed to treat Internet providers as bottomless pits of money for the taking.
This is the WORLD Wide Web about which we speak. It is clearly a federal government regulatory prerogative to put a stop to this.
Which is why we are so pleased with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)’s recent ruling on municipal fees for Internet providers.
It caps the charges localities can levy – at a HARD 5%.
Not 5% cash – plus mandates to provide free Internet and TV to every government edifice of which they can think.
Not 5% cash – plus mandates to build parks and install statues all over town.
5% – TOTAL. If you want a park and a statue – that counts against your 5%.
And 5% – is a VERY generous allotment, given how incredibly expensive broadband buildout is.
Many thanks to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and his colleagues – for getting this done.
America is better, stronger and safer for it.