Policies and Initiatives

AB 2239 (BONTA)

Assembly Bill 2239 seeks to bring to California a definition of digital discrimination that is currently wrapped up in significant precedential litigation at the federal level. At the heart of the battle is Assembly Bill 2239’s attempt to deploy a “disparate impact” standard rather than the widely accepted “disparate treatment” standard. What is the difference? It is simple: disparate treatment is intentional discrimination while disparate impact means that companies can be sued if every person and every community does not have the same ISP experience. Meaning, if an ISP is looking to upgrade its network in a rolling fashion, which is typical considering the cost and government oversight in California to do anything regarding infrastructure the neighborhood at the end of the roll out schedule could sue the company because that community can claim it is being discriminated against by not receiving the upgrade at the same time as the first community.

Download the Fact Sheet here.

Policy Positions

 As the Golden State’s leaders in providing high-speed internet services, we utilize the collective experience of our member, who have been deploying broadband since the mid-1990’s, to develop policy recommendations to connect the unserved, improve broadband adoption rates and encourage infrastructure modernization.

icon of an internet tower

Broadband Affordability

The price of broadband has trailed inflation in stark contrast to other necessary goods and services purchased by consumers.  In fact, based on data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, on an inflation-adjusted basis, the year-over-year change in the price of internet services was negative throughout 2021, with the size of this decline generally increasing throughout the year. Prices have remained constant for internet service as the value in terms of speed has increased.  This has been true even through strong increases in demand. 

CalBroadband supports efforts, such as such as the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), to remove barriers to adoption. ACP is a government partnership with internet service providers that makes high speed, home broadband available to eligible households at no cost to them.

icon of people

Connecting the Unserved

Cable broadband operators offer fast, reliable broadband to 97% of California homes and business, making gigabit speeds widely available. Cable broadband providers are participating in state programs, such as the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) Instructure Grant Account, and federal programs, such as the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, to close the remaining unserved households. CalBroadband is advocating to ensure funding with the CPUC’s Federal Funding Account ($2 billion) and the forthcoming federal funding from the Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program are allocated for the purpose of connecting unserved households to achieve 100% broadband availability in the Golden State.

icon of a lightbulb

Spurring Continued Innovation

CalBroadband members have collectively invested more than $45 billion to deploy and upgrade California’s broadband infrastructure and networks over the last two decades. In that time, cable broadband providers have rolled out gigabit speeds across their footprints and provide ubiquitous service to communities throughout their networks. 

In 2019, the cable broadband industry unveiled the 10G initiative, announcing engineering and technology testing to make next-generation networks a reality, bringing 10 gigabit per second (Gbps) speeds to households across America. With the 10G initiative, the cable broadband providers are reinventing how people connect, live, work, and play.