The U.S. Senate is working on legislation that will allow city governments to push muni-WiFi initiatives without interference from state governments. States including Florida, Texas, Virginia and Pennsylvania have enacted laws intended to curb those projects because they don't like municipalities competing with private business. Of course, state governments have also been heavily lobbied by the likes of existing broadband players like BellSouth and Verizon to enact these laws or enforce them if the laws are already on the books. In response, The Senate Commerce Committee voted this week to keep state governments from prohibiting its own municipalities from offering broadband services. It does say, though, that any municipality that chooses to sell its own broadband service must give a 30-day notice and solicit bids from the private sector. But it's not required to accept any of the bids.
To read more about the Senate's move to ease muni-WiFi:
- see this article from ZDNet News