The State Legislature has passed a bill co-sponsored by State Senator George Borrello that could help expand access to broadband service in rural areas.
Senator Borrello said the bill will ease the cost and operational obstacles faced by broadband service providers seeking to build out infrastructure in rural and underserved areas of the state.
The bill would allow broadband providers seeking to install internet service via utility poles in a given area to obtain one contract for all the poles in that city, town or village, rather than having to get a contract for each individual pole, as is currently the case.
The bill also prohibits the practice of requiring broadband providers to pay for the cost of replacing aging utility poles. It establishes that providers requesting space on a pole will only be liable for a small portion of any replacement costs.