California looks to adopt Obama-style net neutrality rules

California on Verge of Mandating 100% Renewable Energy by 2045					30 Aug 2018 Newport Beach CA
California on Verge of Mandating 100% Renewable Energy by 2045 30 Aug 2018 Newport Beach CA

02 September, 2018

California lawmakers have voted to make net neutrality state law, becoming the latest of several states to approve such measures.

The senate voted to save net neutrality back in May after the Federal Communications Commission led by Trump-appointee Ajit Pai repealed Obama-era regulations a year ago. The bipartisan bill passed 61-18 and will now return to the Senate before being sent to Governor Jerry Brown to sign or veto. "So when Donald Trump's FCC made a decision to take a wrecking ball to net neutrality protections, we knew that California had to step in to ensure our residents have access to a free and open internet". After making it through the Assembly on a 48-25 vote in May, the Senate approved it this week 25-12. Jerry Brown's desk in hopes that a signature will restore consumer protections that the Federal Communications Commission revoked in December.

But the current FCC, led by Republican Chairman Ajit Pai, repealed those regulations in June, with Pai calling them "heavy-handed".

Utility workers would get protections for their jobs, salaries, benefits and pensions as part of a measure allowing California power companies to raise electric bills to cover the cost of lawsuits from last year's deadly wildfires.

Many advocates for net neutrality find the California legislation hopeful.

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The proposals come amid rising privacy and security concerns about Internet of Things devices, including the potential for data collection from users.

After passing in the Assembly on Wednesday, SB-826 breezed easily through the Senate yesterday.

With the bill's passage in the Assembly and a vote potentially in the Senate happening today, the Electronic Frontier Foundation called on California residents to tell their lawmakers to support the bill. In some of its provisions, the California bill goes further than the national rules that the FCC repealed, taking an expansive view of the broadband industry's public obligations. Many fear the "cabelisation of the internet" that would occur under the absence of net neutrality.

The federal government could sue the state of California over the law, leading to an eventual showdown in the Supreme Court. They call it a bailout of Pacific Gas & Electric company.

Organizations that oppose the bill argue that it only addresses one type of diversity and could be a violation of the state or federal constitution if, say, a company has to turn down a male candidate or swap out a male board member for a female one.

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