(April 17) – The House passed legislation today to ensure that an open and free internet is protected in Colorado.
HB18-1312, sponsored by Reps. Chris Hansen, D-Denver, and Leslie Herod, D-Denver, to protect net neutrality and safeguard taxpayer money, passed on a 35-28 vote.
Last year, the Trump administration rolled back Obama-era rules ensuring a free and open internet. Washington state, Montana and most recently Oregon all passed legislation or have taken other steps to protect net neutrality.
“In the absence of leadership in DC, it is time for the states to act,” Rep. Hansen said. “Our bill prevents taxpayer dollars from being used to support throttled or blocked internet service.”
“The internet is an indispensable part of our lives,” Rep. Herod said. “It is imperative that the internet remains open for consumers, innovators and businesses. Our bill adheres to Colorado values of transparency and equal access for all.”
HB18-1312 would ensure that:
- telecommunication companies in Colorado that use taxpayer money to provide services cannot charge additional access fees to consumers, or fees to websites to create paid “fast lanes.”
- companies that receive assistance to expand rural broadband must provide net-neutral service.
- state contracting will prefer internet service providers that deliver net neutrality.
HB18-1312 now goes to the state Senate.