IP-3-2012 (April 2012)
Author: Amy Oliver Cooke
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A bipartisan group of lawmakers have introduced Senate Bill 157, titled the “Telecommunications Modernization Act of 2012.” The 71-page bill deregulates some local phone service and makes new assumptions about public policy. It redefines service providers and eliminates some corporate subsidies. It also repurposes an existing funding mechanism to achieve newly assumed public policy goals, and reshuffles winners and losers in the telecommunications industry. While the deregulation of some local
phone service may be tempting and long overdue, the cost of SB 157 as it is currently written is quite high. This well-meaning bill has some troubling unintended consequences.