state of PA restricts cities from offering wireless

I’m sad. The state of PA passed, and the governor signed (12/1), a bill that prevents municipalities from offering wireless networks. Verizon lobbied for this legislation in response to Philadelphia’s plan to offer low or free wireless across the city. On the radio the other day, I heard an interview with a Verizon spokesperson who said they might let Philadelphia do it. How fucking kind of them.

Basically the bill lets Verizon get a right of first refusal if any municipality wants to offer its own service. Should Verizon say no, it then has to provide broadband to that community within 14 months. Of course at its own prices …

muniwireless.com has more.