Senate approves Nesbitt legislation to improve broadband access

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Thursday approved a measure sponsored by state Sen. Aric Nesbitt that seeks to improve access to reliable broadband internet.

“Expanding broadband access is crucial for families, seniors and those working from home,” said Nesbitt, R-Lawton. “Many folks in my district and underserved areas across the state have been left behind, so we need to encourage significant broadband investments to get everyone caught up, and on a level playing field.”

Senate Bill 46 would increase incentives and promote investment in broadband equipment with the hope of bringing more high-speed internet infrastructure and service to underserved and unserved areas of the state. The legislation aims to prompt investors to upgrade their equipment and expand services to areas that currently do not receive high-speed internet.

Nesbitt introduced a similar bill in 2019, and the need for broadband has escalated due to COVID-19. Nesbitt said he remains committed to improving internet access for his district and throughout the state.

“Reliable access to the internet is increasingly becoming a requirement for day-to-day life,” Nesbitt said. “The bill will lower government-imposed costs, reduce barriers to expansion and encourage meaningful investments in our communities.”

The legislation will now move to the Michigan House of Representatives for further consideration.

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