Since the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was passed into law, new technologies and advancements in telecommunications have rapidly developed due to the limited government regulation of internet traffic and services. This unrestricted free market has since provided broadband to many Americans without government intervention or interference.
Rural access to broadband is the most pressing telecommunication issues in Congress’ jurisdiction. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released reports with suggestions on improving broadband access as a result of a mandate in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. We must be careful to reform broadband access in a way that is sustainable, executed fairly and will prevent unintended negative consequences on consumers. We need to ensure that all areas of the 8th District have access to broadband.
Another aspect of telecommunications policy is the regulation of the internet to prevent identity theft, privacy invasion and copyright infringement. As with many federal agencies, the FCC must not impose overreaching regulations that violate First Amendment rights and have adverse affects on the economy.