Concurrent Resolution Creating a Special Joint Committee to Develop a Comprehensive Telecommunications Plan for the State Exposed
A Concurrent Resolution Creating a Special Joint Committee to Develop a Comprehensive Telecommunications Plan for the State and to Make Recommendations Thereon to the Legislature; To Provide for the Membership and Organization of the Joint Committee; and for Related Purposes was included in ALEC's 1995 Sourcebook of American State Legislation. ALEC has attempted to distance itself from this piece of legislation after the launch of ALECexposed.org in 2011, but it has done nothing to get it repealed in the states where it previously pushed for it to be made into law.
ALEC Resolution Text
The challenge for states is to maximize the use of the existing telecommunications infrastructure and plan for a long-range solution to the diverse needs of each state which will deploy the necessary technology at a price consumers can afford, regulators can approve and the private sector can provide. This produces an equitable solution to both public and private sector and will enable the state to compete in the worldwide information marketplace. This evolutionary approach envisions the expansion of high capacity fiber optic communications to provide the broadband telecommunications solutions to many of today’s problems in educating and retraining our workforce, providing quality and affordable health care to citizens in rural areas, generating productive jobs, increasing security to individuals and businesses, and increasing the competitive production of goods and services.
WHEREAS the Federal Interstate Highway Program was enacted by Congress to provide a 21st century infrastructure for the transportation of its citizens and commodities: and
WHEREAS the legislature believes that the need for a telecommunications “superhighway” should be studied in order to provide a state-of-the-art infrastructure for the transportation of telecommunications - including information services, distance learning, telemedicine, telecommuting, and many others that may not have been identified; and
WHEREAS telecommunications offers solutions in the fields of education, transportation, health care, governmental information services, law enforcement, and other areas. Each of these needs should be considered in order to design an infrastructure that can satisfy them; and
WHEREAS the objective is to develop a plan which provides the flexibility to deploy the necessary technology at a price consumers can afford, state regulators can approve, and the private sector can deliver. The ideal solution will attract industry and benefit consumers with state-of-the-art services that are universally available at affordable costs.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE STATE SENATE, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN, that there is hereby created a special joint committee to develop a comprehensive telecommunications plan for the state and to make recommendations thereon to the legislature; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the joint committee shall be composed of two senators to be appointed by the lieutenant governor and two members of the House of Representatives to be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives. The lieutenant Governor shall appoint the chairman to the joint committee and the Speaker of the House of Representatives shall appoint the vice-chairman. The vice-chairman shall also serve as secretary and shall be responsible for keeping all records of the joint committee. A majority of the members of the joint committee shall constitute a quorum. All members shall be notified in writing of all meetings. Such notices shall be mailed at least five days prior to the date on which a meeting is to be held; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the joint committee is authorized to accept any money from any source, public or private, to be expended in implementing its duties under this resolution; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the joint committee shall not hire any state employee, but shall utilize the clerical and legal staff already employed by the House and Senate; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED to develop a comprehensive telecommunications plan for the state, the joint committee should identify all of the diverse needs of the state and its citizens, analyze existing facilities and systems, and design an ultimate infrastructure. In order to identify needs, a broad array of telecommunications users and providers should be surveyed. Regulators, educators, transportation officials, health care providers, prison commissions, local exchange telephone companies, inter-exchange carriers, computer companies, broadcasters, cable companies, electric power associations, and many others shall be invited to participate in the identification of long and short term needs; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that existing facilities and systems includes copper cables, coaxial cables, fiber optic cables, microwave radio systems, AM and FM radio transmission facilities, satellite systems, cellular, and mobile systems. While all these facilities are available to meet specific needs, an integrated approach will provide efficient, cost-effective use of the total telecommunications infrastructure; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the joint committee shall recommend the financial resources to be used to implement the plan over the appropriate timetable. The joint committee shall review laws relating to the telecommunications industry and shall make recommendations to remove any barriers which would prevent or delay implementation of the plan.