SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KION)
UPDATE 7/15/2021 12:15 p.m. A $6 billion broadband package has passed in the state Assembly and Senate, according to Monterey County Supervisor Luis Alejo.
Alejo said the bill was passed in the assembly by a bipartisan vote of 71-0. He said it passed in the senate by a 39-0 bipartisan vote. He said only Sen. Grove did not vote.
The bill now heads to Gov. Gavin Newsom's desk for his signature.
One of the key leaders in shaping the historic $6B Broadband Package in #SB156 is Assemblymember @SantiagoAD53, who references the 2 little girls of #EastSalinas who were accessing the Internet for school outside Taco Bell last August! That image demanded this landmark action!✊🏽 pic.twitter.com/obJgmt7Yvj— Luis Alejo⚖️ (@SupervisorAlejo) July 15, 2021
PREVIOUS STORY: Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he, Senate President pro Temore Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) have agreed on a broadband trailer bill intended to expand the state's broadband fiber infrastructure and increase internet connectivity.
“This broadband package is historic. It transcends politics, and it will be a legacy project that will benefit generations of rural and urban residents alike. This legislation will yield vital, broadened access for California families by prioritizing the unserved and underserved areas, facilities, households, and businesses that remain disconnected in the digital era," they wrote in a statement.
They say the bill includes:
- More accountability and legislative oversight
- The creation of a "broadband czar" and council within the California Department of Technology
- Hiring a third-party to build and maintain the "middle-mile network" high capacity fiberlines
- Investing $3.25 billion to target the middle mile and build broadband lines
- Providing $2 billion for "last-mile" infrastructure lines ($1 billion for rural communities and $1 billion for urban communities)