Montana on Monday became the first state to bar telecommunications companies from receiving state contracts if they interfere with internet traffic or favor higher-paying sites or apps, under an order from Gov. Steve Bullock meant to protect so-called net neutrality. "It's time to actually do something about it".
Montana's attempt to enforce net neutrality rules could be challenged in court. "This is a simple step", he said in a statement, adding that "we can't wait for folks in Washington DC to come to their senses and reinstate these [neutrality] rules".
After July 1, to receive a contract from the state, a service provider must publicly disclose to all of its customers accurate information regarding the network and transport management practices and performance and commercial terms of its broadband internet access services sufficient for consumers to make informed choices regarding use of such services.More news: DMV accepting applications for optional "REAL ID" cards
Many major landline and mobile broadband providers, including Charter, CenturyLink, AT&T and Verizon, hold government contracts in the state.
Democrats are fighting back by pushing for legislation in Congress that would wipe out the FCC vote, suing to overturn it and now by implementing laws at the state level.
But most Republicans, including FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, argue the rules were unnecessary and that existing laws are sufficient to preserve an open internet.More news: Fans pay respects to Dolores O'Riordan
Like all of those planned actions, however, Bullock's executive order is bound to face an uphill battle. Governor Bullock said in an interview that he expected to sign the order on Monday.
The FCC's repeal of net neutrality rules scrapped the US-wide regulations, and it preempts state and local governments from enacting their own, similar net neutrality rules. "If you want to do business with Montana", the Governor said in the interview, "there are standards on net neutrality you will have to follow". The state of Montana is one of the biggest consumers of internet services in our state.More news: Arab Coalition Supporting Legitimacy in Yemen launches Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations in Yemen