State leaders announce steps to protect net neutrality

Inslee, Ferguson and legislators prepared to push back against damaging federal actions

From left, Andrew Sullivan of Sub Pop Records, Moz.com CEO Sarah Bird, Attorney General Bob Ferguson, Gov. Jay Inslee, Rep. Drew Hansen, Rep. Norma Smith and Sen. Manka Dhingra attend a press conference on Washington state’s actions to protect net neutrality rules Dec. 13 in the Governor’s Conference Room in Olympia. (Governor’s Office Photo)
Gov. Jay Inslee visits coding students at Shoultes Elementary School in Snohomish County in March. Access to technology education, as well as a free and open internet, are key to Washington’s innovation economy. (Governor’s Office photo)

Hold companies to their commitments not to block websites, throttle speeds, or impose prioritization pricing

  • Direct the state’s Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) to establish a process for ISPs to certify that they will not engage in practices inconsistent with net neutrality principles.
  • Limit state-conferred benefits to ISPs that have made such certifications.
  • Limit applicability of UTC pole attachment rules to ISPs that are net neutral.
  • Review other state-conferred benefits such as easements and taxes.

Leverage the state’s power as a large purchaser of ISP and telecommunications services

  • Use the state government’s role as a big customer, and our ability to establish state master contracts used by local governments, to incentivize Washington companies to adhere to net neutrality principles.
  • Pursue regulatory and legislative action to award contracts to vendors that meet net neutral business requirements.
  • Lead the exploration of a multi-state purchasing cooperative to procure internet service from providers that adhere to net neutrality principles.

Hold companies accountable for warranties made to consumers

  • Create a state-wide internet speed test. This will allow Washingtonians to test their own broadband speed at home, and submit the test to help appropriate state agencies determine what internet speeds consumers are receiving and where companies may be blocking or throttling.
  • Collaborate with legislators to strengthen our consumer protection laws to include the principles of net neutrality.

Encourage new entrants into the currently concentrated ISP market

  • Pursue legislation authorizing public utility districts and rural and urban port districts to provide retail ISP and telecommunications services.
  • Prohibit government-owned ISP services, such as municipal broadband networks, from engaging in blocking, throttling, or priority pricing for Internet services.

Washington State Governor's Office

News and updates from Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee and his administration.

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News and updates from Gov. Jay Inslee and his administration.

Washington State Governor's Office

News and updates from Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee and his administration.