CSAC Applauds Broadband Bill Signing By Governor Newsom
October 8, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Sara Floor, Communications Manager
SACRAMENTO–California State Association of Counties, the voice of California’s 58 Counties, reacts to Governor Newsom signing broadband legislation.
California’s Counties applaud Governor Newsom, Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, and Senator Lena Gonzalez for working together to seize the moment and answer the call to increase broadband access and affordability this legislative session. AB 14 (Aguiar-Curry) and SB 4 (Gonzalez), which were signed today, join SB 156 in a series of legislative victories including historic broadband infrastructure funding to close the digital divide in California.
“This is remarkable news for all Californians, especially the more than 2 million residents, rural and urban alike, who lack broadband at even basic speeds,” said CSAC 1st Vice President and Siskiyou County Supervisor Ed Valenzuela. “Not only do these bills ensure that critical broadband infrastructure funding will not expire, but they also maximize the impact of the recent $6 billion investment in broadband projects approved through the signing of SB 165. Together, these bills extend a rural county lifeline that will transform the way schools, small businesses, healthcare organizations, and others can provide goods and services statewide.”
Among other things, AB 14 extends the sunset on the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF) surcharge from the end of 2022 to the end of 2032 and closes a loophole that allows VoIP providers to avoid the charge, ensuring the burden is not unfairly shifted to other telecom customers. SB 4 increases the annual limit on funds CASF can collect from $66 million to $150 million, addresses speed and local government eligibility and removes the cumulative cap of the Fund. It also includes language to improve permit streamlining.
California State Association of Counties (CSAC) is the voice of California’s 58 counties at the state and federal levels.