New York to require internet providers to charge low-income residents $15 for broadband

NEW YORK (AP) — New York can move ahead with a law requiring internet service providers to offer heavily discounted rates to low-income residents, a federal appeals court ruled Friday.

The decision from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan reverses a lower court ruling from 2021 that blocked the policy just days before it went into effect.

The law would force internet companies to give some low-income New Yorkers broadband service for as low as $15 a month, or face fines from the state.

Telecoms trade groups sued over the law, arguing it would cost them too much money and that it wrongly superseded a federal law that governs internet service.

On Friday, the industry groups said they were weighing their next legal move.

“We are disappointed by the court’s decision and New York state’s move for rate regulation in competitive industries. It not only discourages the needed investment in our nation’s infrastructure, but also potentially risks the sustainability of broadband operations in many areas,” a statement read.

New York state lawmakers approved the law in 2021 as part of the budget, with supporters arguing that the policy would give low-income residents a way to access the internet, which has become a vital utility.

Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up