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Denver Ballot Issue 2H Restore Right of Denver to Provide Internet Services

Referred measure 2H: Restore Right of Denver to Provide Internet ServicesTitle: Shall the City and County of Denver re-establish the city’s right to provide all services restricted since 2005 by Senate Bill 05-152.Background: In 2005, the Colorado General Assembly passed Senate Bill 05-152 (SB 05-152), which prevents local governments from entering the broadband market and prohibits most uses of municipal or county money for infrastructure to improve local broadband service without voter permission. The state legislation requires that a popular vote approve the locality’s exemption from 152.Major Provisions:-Allows the city to opt out of Colorado SB 05-152-Allows for the authority but not the obligation for the City to provide high-speed Internet (advanced services), telecommunication services, and cable television services, including any new and improved high bandwidth services based on future technologies, to residents, businesses, schools, libraries, non-profit entities, and other users of such services either directly or indirectly with public or private sector partners.

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  • Yes - For the Measure

  • No - Against the Measure

Those in favor say: -Access to the internet is not distributed equally among all classes of people. Gaps exist today in access to broadband internet; Major providers still don’t connect all of Denver’s households and businesses to broadband. Gaps in coverage are primarily in the northern and western areas of the city.

-Opting out of SB-152 simply removes the local prohibition on expending public funds to provide service and allows local jurisdictions to explore and develop plans for their communities. If any jurisdiction gets to the point where they are looking to invest public funds, they must follow their own guidelines for doing so.

-The city’s ability to manage and enhance broadband access requires that the city be able to negotiate with providers.

-This does not force Denver to engage in any discussions or changes but allows for those discussions.
Those opposed say: -Comcast is already obligated to offer a level of broadband service to all residents.