The Broadband Report
The latest from the team at Broadband Now

Published:

In Spite of Lobbyist Efforts, over 500 Community Broadband Networks Across US

Telecom lobbyists have been doing their best to block municipal broadband networks. In spite of their efforts, public-owned Internet options continue to spread in towns throughout the US.

The data set below, based on records from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, shows 528 communities served by public-owned broadband networks in the US.

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Municipal broadband expanding despite restrictive state laws

Considering that more than half of US residents only have one Internet service provider (ISP) to “choose” from, municipal broadband can be a game changer for rural areas where commercial ISPs can’t or won’t provide service.

Independence, OR is one of hundreds of towns to implement community broadband to residents in need.

Independence, OR is one of hundreds of towns to implement community broadband to residents in need.

While the data is encouraging for municipal broadband advocates considering the FCC’s recent defeat in Tennessee and North Carolina, full-fledged city-wide networks like Chattanooga’s “smart grid” are rare.

Only 96 of the community networks have confirmed “gig” status (speeds of 1000Mbps up/down). Implementing gig networks in the first place can be difficult, even when funded privately, thanks to a complex array of laws in 19 states.

Data from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance
CityStatePopulationTypeStimulusGig
CityNet (Dakota Interconnect)AberdeenSD24992inet
Grays Harbor PUDAberdeenWA16008partial
BVU OptiNetAbingdonVA8200fiberY
OneCommunityAkronOH207209partial
ALP Business CommunicationsAlexandriaMN11000partial
Algona Municipal UtilitiesAlgonaIA5227cable
AltatecAltaIA1862cable
AmmonAmmonID14000partialNY
AnaheimAnaheimCA340000dark
Anaheim FiberAnaheimCA332361inet
Anderson Municipal Light and PowerAndersonIN56000partial
Chelan PUDArdenvoirWA50partial
ConnectArlingtonArlington CountyVA227000darkN
ERC BroadbandAshevilleNC76636dark
Ashland Fiber NetworkAshlandOR20996cable
OneCommunityAshtabulaOH19680partial
Athens Utility BoardAthensTN13500partialNY
BVU OptiNetAtkinsVA1100partialY
Auburn Essential ServicesAuburnIN13000fiber
Onlight AuroraAuroraIL200000partial
OnLight AuroraAuroraIL200000dark
Community Network Services – CamillaBacontonGA900cable
Bagley Public UtilitiesBagleyMN1400cable
SGRITA Rural Last Mile Infrastructure Project Last MileBaker CountyGA3085partialY
OneCommunityBarbertonOH26533partial
BarbourvilleBarbourvilleKY3624cable
Bardstown CableBardstownKY11298cable
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)BarnardVT1000partial
Barnesville Municipal UtilitiesBarnesvilleMN2300partial
City of BartowBartowFL17000dark
Kane County Fiber OpticsBataviaIL26000dark
Douglas County Community NetworkBauer’s LandingWA50inet
Beaver County FiberBeaver CountyPA171673inet
Scott County Fiber NetworkBelle PlaineMN6600darkN
BellevueBellevueIA2302fiber
Benton PUD BroadbandBenton CityWA3013partial
Benton PUD BroadbandBenton CountyWA155991partial
Beresford Municipal Telephone/CablevisionBeresfordSD2279cable
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)BethelVT500partial
SMBS – Bingham lakeBingham LakeMN126fiberY
Chelan PUDBlewettWA50partial
BVU OptiNetBluefieldVA5400partialYY
Bowling Green Municipal UtilityBowling GreenKY50663partial
Braintree Electric Light DepartmentBraintreeMA35488cable
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)BraintreeVT1200partial
SMBS – BrewsterBrewsterMN473fiberY
Douglas County Community NetworkBridgeportWA2022inet
Douglas County Community NetworkBridgeport BarWA40inet
Bristol CTBristolCT60722inet
Bristol TN Essential ServicesBristolTN25021fiberY
BVU OptiNetBristolVA17690fiberY
Axcess OntarioBristol CenterNYdark
Axcess OntarioBristol SpringsNYdark
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)BrookfieldVT1300partial
SwiftelBrookingsSD20184fiber
Bryan Municipal UtilitiesBryanOH8210cable
Burbank Water and PowerBurbankCA103121partial
Kane County Fiber OpticsBurlingtonIL600dark
Mt Vernon Fiber Optic ServicesBurlingtonWA8400partialY
Tri-GigBurlingtonNC51000dark
Butler CountyButler CountyOH368130inet
Community Network Services – Cairo (Syrup City)CairoGA9870cable
CALNETCalhounGA15500partial
SGRITA Rural Last Mile Infrastructure Project Last MileCalhoun CountyGA6694partialY
Community Network Services – CamillaCamillaGA5355cable
Axcess OntarioCanandaiguaNYdark
Clackamas Broadband ExpressCanbyOR16000darkY
OneCommunityCantonOH78379partial
Carroll County BroadbandCarroll CountyMD170089dark
FibercomCartersvilleGA20000partial
CarverLinkCarverMN4100darkY
Chelan PUDCashmereWA2955fiberY
BVU OptiNetCastlewoodVA2000partialY
OptiLinkCatoosa CountyGA64035partial
BVU OptiNetCedar BluffVA1085partialYY
Cedar Falls UtilitiesCedar FallsIA39387fiberY
Cedar Falls Utilities – rural expansionCedar FallsIA39260partialY
Urbana-Champaign Big Broadband UC2BChampaignIL81000partialY
CarverLinkChanhassenMN23000darkY
ChanuteChanuteKS8738partial
Chapel Hill Fiber Optic ServicesChapel HillNC53546inet
Chaska.NetChaskaMN24000partial
EPB Fiber OpticsChattanoogaTN171350fiberY
Chelan PUDChelanWA4107partial
Chelan PUDChelan CountyWA73372fiberY
Cheney Fiber NetworkCheneyWA9743partial
Axcess OntarioCheshireNYdark
Fast RoadsCheshireNH800darkY
Chicopee Electric LightChicopeeMA56000partialNY
BVU OptiNetChillhowieVA1827partialY
Chelan PUDChumstickWA50partial
CC CommunicationsChurchillNV24355fiber
Hamilton CountyCincinnatiOH800000inet
Clallam PUDClallam CountyWA71413partial
Fast RoadsClaremontNH13000darkY
Clarksville CDE LightbandClarksvilleTN124565fiberY
BVU OptiNetClay Pool HillVA1700partialY
BVU OptiNetClevelandVA150partialY
OneCommunityClevelandOH461324partial
OneCommunityCleveland HeightsOH45404partial
Axcess OntarioClifton SpringsNYdark
BVU OptiNetClinchcoVA400partialYY
BVU OptiNetClintwoodVA1400partialYY
CBPUColdwaterMI10425cable
City of College Station Dark FiberCollege StationTX95000darkY
Collins CommunicationsCollinsMS2861cable
CarverLinkCologneMN1500darkY
CPWS BroadbandColumbiaTN35248cable
Howard County Fiber NetworkColumbiaMD103000darkY
Columbia County Community Broadband NetworkColumbia CountyGA124053partialY
Concord Light BroadbandConcordMA18000fiber
Conway CorporationConwayAR59512cable
Coon Rapids Municipal UtilitiesCoon RapidsIA1238cable
City of WilliamstownCorinthKY181partialY
MI-ConnectionCorneliusNC25000cable
Cortez Community NetworkCortezCO8500partial
Grant PUDCoulee CityWA951partial
Grant PUDCoulee DamWA1050partial
Crosslake CommunicationsCrosslakeMN2128partial
City of Crystal FallsCrystal FallsMI1549cable
OptiLinkDaltonGA33604fiber
BVU OptiNetDamascusVA1000partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressDamascusOR10500darkY
nDanvilleDanvilleVA44400partialY
MI-ConnectionDavidsonNC11000cable
Howard County Fiber NetworkDaytonMD2000darkY
DeKalb Advancement of Technology Authority BroadbandDeKalb CountyIL44000partialY
Grant PUDDesert AireWA1124fiber
Douglas County Community NetworkDesert CanyonWA100inet
Community Network Services – DoerunDoerunGA800cableNN
Douglas County Community NetworkDouglas CountyWA37565inet
Oregon South Central Regional Fiber Consortium Lighting the Fiber Middle Mile ProjectDouglas CountyOR107667partialY
Douglas County School System FiberDouglasvilleGA32812inet
Dover TechnologyDoverOH12816dark
Chelan PUDDrydenWA50fiberY
DublinDublinGA16000partialNN
Dublink+DublinOH34000partialN
LENOWISCO Planning District CommissionDuffieldVA91000partial
DurangoDurangoCO17000dark
Access EaganEaganMN64000partial
SGRITA Rural Last Mile Infrastructure Project Last MileEarly CountyGA11008partialY
Axcess OntarioEast BloomfieldNYdark
Connecticut Education NetworkEast HartfordCTdarkY
EPB Fiber OpticsEast RidgeTN19985fiberY
Douglas County Community NetworkEast WenatcheeWA12569inet
Eastern Shore of Virginia Broadband AuthorityEastern VirginiaVAquestion
OneCommunityEastlakeOH19733partial
EastonOnlineEastonMD14829cable
Chippewa Internetworking Consortium (CINC)Eau ClaireWI66623inet
City of EdmondsEdmondsWA39515dark
Elberton UtilitiesElbertonGA4650cable
Kane County Fiber OpticsElginIL110000dark
Scott County Fiber NetworkElko New MarketMN4100darkN
Howard County Fiber NetworkElkridgeMD15500darkY
City of EllensburgEllensburgWA18000partialNN
Howard County Fiber NetworkEllicot CityMD65000darkY
OneCommunityElyriaOH54947partial
BVU OptiNetEmery-Meadow ViewVA2200partialY
Fast RoadsEnfieldNH4500partialY
Chelan PUDEntiatWA1082partial
Grant PUDEphrataWA7569partial
Erwin FiberErwinTN6000partialNY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressEstacadaOR2700darkY
EugeneEugeneOR156000dark
EvanstonEvanstonIL75000partial
Axcess OntarioFarmingtonNYdark
Fayetteville Public UtilitiesFayettevilleTN7215cable
Axcess OntarioFishersNYdark
Fast RoadsFitzwilliamNH2400darkY
EPB Fiber OpticsFlintstoneGA3500fiberY
Forsyth CablenetForsythGA5162cable
FPUAnet CommunicationsFort PierceFL37841partial
Frankfort Plant BoardFrankfortKY27382cable
Franklin Municipal FiberNETFranklinKY8408partial
Franklin PUD BroadbandFranklin CountyWA77355partial
Howard County Fiber NetworkFultonMD2000darkY
GahannaGahannaOH33224inet
GATOR NETGainesvilleFL116616partial
Wired RoadGalaxVA6880partialY
Axcess OntarioGenevaNYdark
Kane County Fiber OpticsGenevaIL22000dark
BVU OptiNetGlad SpringVA1300partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressGladstoneOR11500darkY
Glasgow Electric Power BoardGlasgowKY14272cable
Glassboro Municipal Area NetworkGlassboroNJ19094inet
GlendaleGlendaleCA200499dark
Glenwood Springs Community Broadband Network (GSCBN)Glenwood SpringsCO9000partial
Axcess OntarioGorhamNYdark
Fast RoadsGoshenNH800darkY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressGovernment CampOR193darkY
Grant PUDGrand CouleeWA951fiber
City of WilliamstownGrant CountyKY22384partialY
Grant PUDGrant CountyWA88098fiber
Access GreenfieldGreenfieldMA17000partial
Tri-GigGreensboroNC280000dark
GEUSGreenvilleTX25553cable
BVU OptiNetGrundyVA1100partialYY
Grundy Center Municipal Light & PowerGrundy CenterIA2524cable
CarverLinkHamburgMN500darkY
CenterGrid (using Hamilton fiber)HamiltonOH62000partialNN
Hamilton Miami UHamiltonOH62795inet
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)HancockVT300dark
Fast RoadsHanoverNH11000darkY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressHappy ValleyOR14000darkY
Harlan Municipal UtilitiesHarlanIA4895cable
The Community AgencyHartleyIA1650cable
Grant PUDHartlineWA146fiber
HartsvilleHartsvilleSC7342question
HITEC – Hawarden Integrated Technology, Energy, & CommunicationHawardenIA2367cable
BVU OptiNetHaysiVA200partialYY
SMBS – Heron LakeHeron LakeMN700fiberY
Tri-GigHigh PointNC108000dark
Highland Communication ServicesHighlandIL10000fiber
Howard County Fiber NetworkHighlandMD1000darkY
Altitude Community BroadbandHighlandsNC1000partial
BVU OptiNetHiltonsVA1600fiberY
Martin County Dark FiberHobe SoundFL11500dark
St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Connect (Economic Development for the 21st Century)HogansburgNY3512partialY
Holland Fiber NetworkHollandMI34053partial
Holly Springs Dark FiberHolly SpringsNC29000dark
HGE.NetHolyokeMA40000partialNY
BVU OptiNetHonakerVA1500partialYY
Axcess OntarioHoneoyeNYdark
Axcess OntarioHopewellNYdark
Energy NetHopkinsvilleKY32095cable
Velocity BroadbandHudsonOH22000partial
Digital RedwoodsHumboldt CountyCA129623inet
Huntsville UtilitiesHuntsvilleGA180000dark
CircaIdaho FallsID55312dark
BVU OptiNetIndependenceVA1000partialY
Independence Light & Power, TelecommunicationsIndependenceIA6074cable
MINETIndependenceOR9510fiber
IndianolaIndianolaIA14782partialNY
Martin County Dark FiberIndiantownFL5500dark
Jackson Energy AuthorityJacksonTN63732fiberY
SMBS – JacksonJacksonMN3300fiberY
Jacksonville iNetJacksonvilleFL813518inet
Martin County Dark FiberJensen BeachFL11700dark
BVU OptiNetJohnson CityTN63000partialY
Scott County Fiber NetworkJordanMN5500darkN
Martin County Dark FiberJupiter IslandFL800dark
KahokaKahokaMO2165cable
Fast RoadsKeeneNH23000darkY
Benton PUD BroadbandKennewickWA67814fiber
KPU TelecommunicationsKetchikanAK7515cable
Kitsap PUDKitsap CountyWA240862fiber
Oregon South Central Regional Fiber Consortium Lighting the Fiber Middle Mile ProjectKlamath CountyOR20840partialY
KotlikKotlikAK650cable
Hometown UtilicomKutztownPA5102fiber
Lafayette Utilities SystemLafayetteLA114915fiberY
LaGrange Telecommunications DepartmentLaGrangeGA30000partial
Lake ConnectionsLake CountyMN11000fiberY
SMBS – LakefieldLakefieldMN1600fiberY
LakelandLakelandFL100000dark
Oregon South Central Regional Fiber Consortium Lighting the Fiber Middle Mile ProjectLane CountyOR154620partialY
DeKalb Advancement of Technology Authority BroadbandLaSalle CountyIL114000partialY
Laurens Municipal Power and CommunicationsLaurensIA1228cable
LawrenceLawrenceKS88000darkNN
Chelan PUDLeavenworthWA2347fiberY
BVU OptiNetLebanonVA3500partialYY
Fast RoadsLebanonNH13000darkY
Lebanon UtilitiesLebanonIN16000cable
LeesburgLeesburgFL22000partial
Lenexa FiberLenexaKS41995dark
LenoxLenoxIA1248fiber
LeverettNetLeverettMA1900fiberNY
Port of Lewiston Fiber NetworkLewistonID42000dark
Loma Linda Connected CommunityLoma LindaCA21659fiber
City of Lompoc (LompocNet)LompocCA42343inet
Long BeachLong BeachCA465576dark
NextLightLongmontCO86000fiberNY
EPB Fiber OpticsLookout MountainTN1800fiberY
OneCommunityLorainOH70260partial
Page County Broadband ProjectLurayVA4895partialY
Fast RoadsLymeNH1700darkY
Mahomet VillageMahometIL7250partialN
Axcess OntarioManchesterNYdark
Manchester WirelessManchesterCT54740inet
Manning Municipal Communication and Television System UtilityManningIA1500cable
Douglas County Community NetworkMansfieldWA348inet
Mapleton CommunicationsMapletonIA1147cable
BVU OptiNetMarionVA6350partialY
Fast RoadsMarlowNH750darkY
MarshallMarshallMO12245fiber
Martinsville Information Network – MINETMartinsvilleVA14000partial
Mason County PUD3Mason CountyWA58016partial
Grant PUDMattawaWA3199fiber
CarverLinkMayerMN1750darkY
OneCommunity – Mayfield VillageMayfield VillageOH3500partial
Medina CountyMedina CountyOH173262darkY
Rio Blanco BroadbandMeekerCO2500partialY
Mendocino Community NetworkMendocino CountyCA87553inet
OneCommunityMentorOH51895partial
Chelan PUDMerittWA50partial
Middletown Miami UMiddletownOH48962inet
SGRITA Rural Last Mile Infrastructure Project Last MileMiller CountyGA6125partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressMilwaukieOR20500darkY
Saint Joe Valley MetroNetMishawakaIN48000dark
SGRITA Rural Last Mile Infrastructure Project Last MileMitchell CountyGA23498partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressMolallaOR8000darkY
Chelan PUDMonitorWA50fiberY
MINETMonmouthOR15083fiber
Monroe Utilities NetworkMonroeGA13534cable
Community Telecom ServicesMonticelloKY6141cable
Monticello Fiber NetworkMonticelloMN11994fiber
MI-ConnectionMooresvilleNC22133cable
MorgantonMorgantonNC17029cable
FiberNETMorristownTN28054fiberY
Grant PUDMoses LakeWA20086partial
Community Network Services – MoultrieMoultrieGA15500cable
Mt Vernon Fiber Optic ServicesMt VernonWA32000partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressMulinoOR2100darkY
Fast RoadsMultipleNH1100darkY
Murray Electric SystemMurrayKY16555cable
OptiLinkMurray CountyGA40621partial
MachLinkMuscatineIA22614cable
Axcess OntarioNaplesNYdark
NESNetNashvilleTN630000dark
City of Negaunee Dept. of Public WorksNegauneeMI4456cable
Nelson County Virginia Broadband ProjectNelson CountyVA15000partialY
BlueAlbanyNew AlbanyOH7300partial
CarverLinkNew GermanyMN370darkY
Fast RoadsNew LondonNH4400darkY
Scott County Fiber NetworkNew PragueMN7300darkN
Utilities Commission, City of New Smyrna BeachNew Smyrna BeachFL23376inet
New York City Wireless Network NYCWiNNew York CityNY8244910inet
Fast RoadsNewportNH6500darkY
Pend Oreille County Public Utility District (PUD) Broadband NetworkNewportWA2200partialY
Community Network Services – Norman ParkNorman ParkGA1000cableNN
liNKCityNorth Kansas CityMO6007fiberY
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)North RandolphVT4800partial
City of Norway CATV SystemNorwayMI2804cable
Norwood Light BroadbandNorwoodMA28442cable
CarverLinkNorwood Young AmericaMN3500darkY
Ocala Utility ServicesOcalaFL55568partial
Martin County Dark FiberOcean Breeze ParkFL460dark
Oconee FOCUS (Fiber Optics Creating Unified Solutions)Oconee CountySC74273partialY
Oconto Falls Municipal UtilitiesOcontoWI4530cable
SMBS – OkabenaOkabenaMN200fiberY
Okanogan PUDOkanogan CountyWA40552fiberY
OpelikaOpelikaAL28000fiberNY
Opp CablevisionOppAL6524cable
OrangeburgOrangeburg CountySC91910partialY
Clackamas Broadband ExpressOregon CityOR32000darkY
Fast RoadsOrfordNH1200darkY
Douglas County Community NetworkOrondoWA1556inet
Osage Municipal UtilitiesOsageIA3431cable
Ottawa NetworkOttawaKS12600partial
City of WilliamstownOwen CountyKY10547partialY
OMU OnlineOwensboroKY54312partialY
Pacific County PUD#2Pacific CountyWA21246partial
Paducah Power SystemPaducahKY25720partial
Page County Broadband ProjectPage CountyVA24042partialY
Palm Beach CountyPalm Beach CountyFL1335000partial
Martin County Dark FiberPalm CityFL10500dark
Palm Coast FiberNETPalm CoastFL73168partialY
Palo Alto FiberPalo AltoCA57000dark
Paragould Light Water and CableParagouldAR25028cable
PasadenaPasadenaCA138101dark
Franklin PUD BroadbandPascoWA58647fiber
The Community AgencyPaullinaIA1000cable
Community Network Services – Pelham (Pelnet)PelhamGA3981cable
Pend Oreille PUDPend Oreille CountyWA12946fiber
Chelan PUDPeshastinWA50fiberY
Axcess OntarioPhelpsNYdark
Pine City Fiber Optic BackbonePine CityMN3123partial
Greenlight (City of Wilson)Pine TopsNC1400fiberY
Pitcairn Power/Community CablePitcairnPA3324cable
Chippewa Internetworking Consortium (CINC)PlattevilleWI11224partialY
Coeur d’Alene Reservation FTTH Project Last Mile Non-remotePlummerID1044partialY
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)PomfretVT1000partial
Ponca City Technology ServicesPonca CityOK25000partialNN
City of Poplar Bluff Municipal UtilitiesPoplar BluffMO17045cable
Mt Vernon Fiber Optic ServicesPort of Skagit CountyWA0partialY
Port of WhitmanPort of WhitmanWA1darkNN
Martin County Dark FiberPort SalernoFL10000dark
Powell Fiber Optic NetworkPowellWY5786fiber
The Community AgencyPrimgharIA900cable
Princeton Municipal UtilitiesPrincetonIL7500partial
Scott County Fiber NetworkPrior LakeMN23000darkN
Benton PUD BroadbandProsserWA5282fiber
PES EnergizePulaskiTN7871fiber
Grant PUDQuincyWA6157fiber
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)ReadingVT650dark
EPB Fiber OpticsRed BankTN11765fiberY
Redding Light PlantReddingMA25000dark
Reedsburg Utility CommissionReedsburgWI9211fiberY
Reedsburg Utility Commission – rural expansionReedsburgWI2000partialY
Reinbeck TelecomReinbeckIA1751cable
BVU OptiNetRichlandsVA1100partialYY
Fast RoadsRichmondNH1100darkY
EPB Fiber OpticsRidgesideTN402fiberY
Fast RoadsRindgeNH6000partialY
Roanoke Valley Broadband AuthorityRoanokeVA100000partial
Rochelle Municipal UtilitiesRochelleIL9556partial
City of RochesterRochesterNY210000dark
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)RochesterVT1100dark
Rock FallsRock FallsIL9200partialN
Connect the Dots: Rockbridge Broadband InitiativeRockbridge CountyVA22307partialY
GWI (using Rockport fiber)RockportME3300darkNY
EPB Fiber OpticsRossvilleGA4100fiberY
SMBS – Round LakeRound LakeMN376fiberY
Grant PUDRoyal CityWA2024fiber
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)RoyaltonVT2600partial
BVU OptiNetRural RetreatVA24000partialY
Axcess OntarioRushvilleNYdark
Russell Municipal CableRussellMA1768cable
Russellville EPB SmartNetRussellvilleKY6000fiberNY
Roanoke Valley Broadband AuthoritySalemVA25000partial
FibrantSalisburyNC31041fiberY
DiamondNetSallisawOK8812fiber
BVU OptiNetSaltvilleVA2200partialY
San Bruno Municipal Cable TVSan BrunoCA41420cable
SF FiberSan FranciscoCA751682question
The Community AgencySanbornIA1308cable
Sandersville FiberLinkSandersvilleGA5981partial
OneCommunitySanduskyOH25651partial
SandyNetSandyOR10000fiberNY
Santa ClaraSanta ClaraCA120000partial
City of Santa FeSanta FeNM69000partialNN
Santa Monica City NetSanta MonicaCA90377partialY
Howard County Fiber NetworkSavageMD7000darkY
Scott County Fiber NetworkSavageMN27000darkN
Scottsboro EPBScottsboroAL14879cable
Sebewaing Light & WaterSebewaingMI1700fiberNY
Tohono O’odham Last-Mile FTTH and Broadband Wireless NetworkSellsAZ2495partialY
Clallam PUDSequimWA5840partial
Martin County Dark FiberSewall’s PointFL2000dark
City of Shafter, CaliforniaShafterCA15911partial
Scott County Fiber NetworkShakopeeMN37000darkN
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)SharonVT1500partial
Mason County Public Utilities DistrictSheltonWA9254partial
Page County Broadband ProjectShenandoahVA5040partialY
Sherwood FiberSherwoodOR13901partial
Shrewsbury Electric and Cable OperationsShrewsburyMA33939cable
EPB Fiber OpticsSignal MountainTN7253fiberY
Lake ConnectionsSilver BayMN1900fiberY
Lake County Fiber NetworkSilver BayMN1900partialY
Grant PUDSoap LakeWA1870fiber
Saint Joe Valley MetroNetSouth BendIN100000dark
Five College Fiber Optic NetworkSouth HadleyMA17196inet
South Sioux City Municipal NetworkSouth Sioux CityNE12213inet
Spanish Fork Community NetworkSpanish ForkUT32643cable
Spencer Municipal UtilitiesSpencerIA11000fiberN
Fast RoadsSpringfieldNH1300darkY
Springfield Dark FiberSpringfieldMA150000dark
Springfield Utility BoardSpringfieldOR60000dark
SpringNetSpringfieldMO150867partialY
Kane County Fiber OpticsSt CharlesIL33000dark
BVU OptiNetSt PaulVA1000partialYY
St. Louis ParkSt. Louis ParkMN46000inet
Axcess OntarioStanleyNYdark
Page County Broadband ProjectStanleyVA1688partialY
Rural Alaska Video E-Health Network (RAVEN)StatewideAKinet
StauntonStauntonVA25000dark
ECFibernet (East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network)StockbridgeVT700dark
Martin County Dark FiberStuartFL15500dark
BVU OptiNetSugar GroveVA750partialY
Douglas County Community NetworkSun CoveWA50inet
Sun Prairie UtilitiesSun PrairieWI23484partial
Fast RoadsSunapeeNH3300darkY
Chippewa Internetworking Consortium (CINC)SuperiorWI27211partialY
Fast RoadsSwanzeyNH7000darkY
SylacaugaSylacaugaAL12607cable
BalsamWest FiberNETSylvaNC2588partial
Click! NetworkTacomaWA199638cable
TallahasseeTallahasseeFL180000dark
Taunton Municipal Lightning PlantTauntonMA56781partial
BVU OptiNetTazewellVA4600partialYY
Q-Life NetworkThe DallesOR11873partial
Community Network Services – ThomasvilleThomasvilleGA19437cable
TiftonTiftonGA17410dark
Traverse City Light & PowerTraverse CityMI15000dark
BVU OptiNetTroutdaleVA190partialY
Truckee Donner Public Utility DistrictTruckeeCA14000dark
PANGAEATryonNC1709partial
Tullahoma Utilities BoardTullahomaTN18434fiberY
Lake ConnectionsTwo HarborsMN3700fiberY
Lake County Fiber NetworkTwo HarborsMN3700partialY
Urbana-Champaign Big Broadband UC2BUrbanaIL41000partialY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – Brigham CityUT18900fiberY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA) HQUTOPIA – CentervilleUT15000fiberYY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – LaytonUT67000partialYY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – LindonUT8861partialY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – MidvaleUT27029partialYY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – MurrayUT46569partialYY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – OremUT89713partialYY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – PaysonUT15479partialY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – PerryUT4500partialY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA)UTOPIA – TremontonUT6043fiberY
Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency (UTOPIA) HQUTOPIA – West Valley CityUT125096partialYY
Valparaiso BroadbandValparaisoFL17966cable
BVU OptiNetVansantVA1000partialYY
Vernon Light & PowerVernonCA112fiber
Axcess OntarioVictorNYdark
CarverLinkVictoriaMN7300darkY
Vineland Metropolitan Area NetworkVinelandNJ57057inet
CarverLinkWaconiaMN10000darkY
City of Wadsworth Electric & Communications Dept.WadsworthOH21007cable
OneCommunityWadsworthOH21567dark
Grant PUDWardenWA2649fiber
CarverLinkWatertownMN4200darkY
Douglas County Community NetworkWatervilleWA1147inet
Chippewa Internetworking Consortium (CINC)WausauWI39213partialY
Connect WaverlyWaverlyIA10000fiberY
Webster CityWebster CityIA8070dark
Chelan PUDWenatcheeWA30229fiberY
Axcess OntarioWest BloomfieldNYdark
Westbrook Municipal Light & PowerWestbrookMN666cable
City of WestfieldWestfieldIN30000partial
Whip City FiberWestfieldMA41000partialNY
Ting (using Westminster fiber)WestminsterMD19000partialNY
Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska Fiber-to-the- PremiseWhite CloudKS1400partialY
White MountainWhite MountainAK205cable
OptiLinkWhitfield CountyGA60094partial
SMBS – WilderWilderMN60fiberY
EPB Fiber OpticsWildwoodGA1900fiberY
City of WilliamstownWilliamstownKY3509cable
GreenlightWilsonNC50000fiberY
Grant PUDWilson CreekWA249fiber
Clackamas Broadband ExpressWilsonvilleOR20000darkY
WindomnetWindomMN4136fiber
Woodsfield Municipal PowerWoodsfieldOH2388cable
OneCommunityWoosterOH26214partial
Worcester Municipal Fiber LoopWorcesterMA182882inet
WyandotteWyandotteMI24174cable
BVU OptiNetWythevilleVA1827partialY
Chelan PUDYodelinWA50partial

Broadband: basic right or simply a convenience?

The debate over municipal broadband boils down to this core issue: is home Internet a right, or a convenience?

For those who consider home Internet access a right, it makes sense to implement municipal broadband to ensure widespread and fairly-priced coverage. White House reports cite studies showing that broadband access is “associated with higher employment rates, especially in rural communities,”[1] as well as helpful in opening career opportunities to married women.[2] Municipal broadband access attracts tech-driven companies to formerly declining cities like Chatanooga, where city-wide gig Internet has driven a community revival and drawn millions in venture capital to the area.[3]

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The Institute for Local Self-Reliance’s Municipal Broadband interactive map shows that public broadband is surprisingly prevalent, especially in the midwest.

For those who consider it a luxury, spending public resources is viewed as wasteful and unnecessary. It also has the potential to put public-owned networks in competition with private companies like Comcast and Time Warner Cable in some areas, interrupting free market forces. Fiber networks can cost millions to install, and returns are risky since unlike other utilities like electricity and water, there’s no guarantee that everyone in the community will sign up (regardless of whether or not private providers also serve the area.)[4]

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Bridging the Digital Divide

The digital divide is becoming a major problem for consumers, and those left in the dark have less access to employment, education, and other 21st-century economies that depend on Internet connectivity.

Whether it comes from the private or public sector, one thing is for certain: the USA is lagging behind other developed nations, ranking only 13th for overall speed as of 2015.[5] without increased competition in the broadband market, US consumers will be left with slow, expensive Internet.

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