Assembly Approves Sen. Dodd’s Broadband Legislation
SACRAMENTO – The California Assembly has approved legislation from Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, that would improve broadband and internet connectivity across California by allowing the state to lease its property to providers for deployment of new infrastructure.
“With approval of this bill, the state takes a step closer to being able to use its property to generate revenue while enticing providers to expand their offerings,” Sen. Dodd said. “It will fill in unserved zones and help get high-speed data to those who need it for work, school and home life.”
Under existing law, the state Department of General Services is limited in its ability to execute leases of state-owned real property that could be used to support statewide broadband development. Such development could support digital equity, especially in underserved communities.
Senate Bill 387 would give General Services more flexibility in setting lease terms, creating incentives for broadband providers to invest in much-needed infrastructure improvements. Also, it would allow the department to execute leases on behalf of other state departments such as Caltrans, Parks and Recreation and Fish and Wildlife, with their consent.
“To survive in today’s economy, it is critically important to have fast, reliable broadband,” Sen. Dodd said. “The problem is, broadband isn’t yet deployed adequately or equitably in many areas of our state. My proposal ensures the state can effectively partner with internet service providers to lease state properties for deployment of broadband infrastructure.”
SB 387 was approved Wednesday by the full Assembly. It heads next to Gov. Gavin Newsom for a signature following a Senate concurrence vote.
Senator Bill Dodd represents the 3rd Senate District, which includes all or portions of Napa, Solano, Yolo, Sonoma, Contra Costa, and Sacramento counties. You can learn more about the district and Senator Dodd at www.sen.ca.gov/dodd.