The Next Centuries Cities coalition, which includes a couple cities that already have gigabit fiber internet for their residents, was devised to help communities who want to build their own broadband networks navigate logistical and legal challenges to doing so.
Read: Six Ways Big Telecom Kills Community Broadband NetworksOver the last several months, there's been a Federal Communications Commission-backed push for cities to build their own broadband networks because big telecom companies like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon either don't or won't offer competitive broadband speeds in certain parts of the country.
"Across the country, city leaders are hungry to deploy high-speed Internet to transform their communities and connect residents to better jobs, better health care, and better education for their children,” Deb Socia, the group's executive director, said in a statement. “These mayors are rolling up their sleeves and getting the job done."
States with laws restricting community broadband. Image: MuniNetworks.orgThat's turned out to be a tricky proposition in a legal environment where more than 20 states have passed legislation (lobbied for by telecom companies and ALEC, a controversial, big business-backed “charity” that writes legislation for states) making it illegal or legally difficult for cities to build their own networks.…