AN ACT TO ENCOURAGE PROVISION OF BROADBAND ACCESS IN ALL AREAS OF NORTH CAROLINA BY PROVIDING FOR THE CREATION OF A STATE BROADBAND PLAN BY THE OFFICE OF THE STATE CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICER AND BY SPECIFYING THAT BROADBAND SERVICE PROVIDERS MAY OFFER COMMUNICATIONS AND BROADBAND SERVICES IN AREAS WHERE THE INCUMBENT SERVICE PROVIDER IS NOT PROVIDING BROADBAND SERVICE.
States the General Assembly's findings on the availability of community broadband connectivity.
Requires the Office of the State Chief Information Officer (Office), through its Office of Digital Infrastructure, with the assistance of the Department of Transportation, the Department of Administration, the Department of Commerce, North Carolina State University, and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, to develop a state broadband plan to ensure that all citizens of North Carolina have access to broadband capability. Specifies components that must be included in the plan. Requires the Office to report by May 1, 2016, to the Joint Legislative Committee on Information Technology on the State broadband plan, including recommendations for necessary legislative action and cost estimates for achieving the objectives set forth in the plan.
Requires funding to implement the act be provided by the Office using funds from the Information Technology Fund.
Amends GS 62-113 to allow a broadband service provider providing voice grade communication services within a defined service territory or franchise area who elects to provide broadband service in areas outside (was, area contiguous to) its service territory or franchise area to provide the service as an incident to such broadband service to a customer when the incumbent telecommunications or cable provider is not currently providing broadband service to the customer, without violating its service territory restrictions or franchise agreement.
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