TRENTON – Senator Jeff Van Drew issued the following statement on the actions by the Murphy Administration to counter the Federal Communications Commission’s recent decision to roll back net neutrality rules.
Governor Murphy signed an executive order yesterday directing state contracting authorities to require that all future contracts for internet, data, and telecommunications be awarded only to Internet Service Providers that adhere to net neutrality principles. In addition, Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced that New Jersey will join 21 other states and the District of Columbia in a lawsuit aimed at blocking the FCC’s rollback of net neutrality. Van Drew had previously urged the governor, as one of his first actions, to file suit against the FCC over its decision:
“These actions put New Jersey at the forefront of countering the FCC’s disastrous decision to roll back net neutrality.
“Requiring companies contracting with the state to adhere to net neutrality principles is a significant step, and sends the message that New Jersey will not sit idle while important regulations that impact the lives of our residents are stripped away. But we also must take steps to address this problem broadly, and I am thankful the Attorney General is joining the suit brought by attorneys general from across the country in challenging the FCC move.
“Our residents rely on equal and affordable access to the internet. Without net neutrality rules in place, Internet Service Providers could implement prioritized service, slow internet speed based on content, or block content altogether. This harms residents, especially those on a fixed income, and this can hurt small businesses that rely on the internet as well.
“We have a responsibility to take a stand to protect our residents, and I am proud New Jersey has done that.”