HB 346: "An Act creating the Broadband Development Corporation; and establishing the Alaska Broadband Task Force."
00 HOUSE BILL NO. 346 01 "An Act creating the Broadband Development Corporation; and establishing the Alaska 02 Broadband Task Force." 03 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 * Section 1. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended by adding a new section 05 to read: 06 LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS. The legislature finds that 07 (1) many communities in the state have limited access to the Internet; 08 (2) although the state is connected to the rest of the world through several 09 fiber optic cables, many areas in the state are unable to take advantage of the speed and 10 capacity the fiber optic cables offer; 11 (3) removing barriers to broadband deployment by using a technology-neutral 12 approach will encourage lower prices for broadband service and offer more choices to 13 consumers; 14 (4) the deployment of broadband networking and advanced
01 telecommunications services throughout the state is essential for the state to keep pace with 02 global changes in economic diversification, education, health care, energy and environmental 03 technology, and public safety; 04 (5) action promoting neutral access is necessary to support investment in and 05 development of accessible broadband networks in the state. 06 * Sec. 2. AS 44.33 is amended by adding new sections to read: 07 Article 15A. Broadband Development Corporation and Alaska Broadband Taskforce 08 and Working Group. 09 Sec. 44.33.925. Broadband Development Corporation established. The 10 Broadband Development Corporation is established for the purpose of facilitating, 11 upgrading, planning, financing, installing, owning, operating, and promoting effective 12 use of a broadband system throughout the state. The corporation is a public 13 corporation of the state. It is an instrumentality of the state in the Department of 14 Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, but has a legal existence 15 independent of and separate from the state. 16 Sec. 44.33.930. Board of directors. (a) The governing body of the corporation 17 is a board of directors. The board consists of 11 persons, as follows: 18 (1) nine voting members, appointed by the governor as follows: 19 (A) one member who is a representative of the executive 20 branch; 21 (B) one member who has expertise in technology; 22 (C) one member who has expertise or experience in developing 23 broadband access in rural areas; 24 (D) one member who is a representative of public broadcasting; 25 (E) one public member; 26 (F) one member who has expertise in broadband technologies; 27 (G) the commissioner of commerce, community, and economic 28 development; 29 (H) two members who have expertise in the operation and the 30 business of operating a broadband network; 31 (2) two nonvoting members, as follows:
01 (A) a member of the house of representatives appointed by the 02 speaker of the house of representatives and who serves at the pleasure of the 03 speaker of the house of representatives; and 04 (B) a member of the senate appointed by the president of the 05 senate and who serves at the pleasure of the president of the senate. 06 (b) A member of the board may not, during the member's term, be employed 07 by an entity that purchases at wholesale a services that uses the broadband system 08 facilitated, upgraded, planned, financed, installed, owned, operated, or promoted by 09 the corporation. Except for the legislative members of the board appointed under 10 AS 44.33.930(a)(2), two members of the board may not be employed by the same 11 entity. 12 (c) The board shall annually elect a chair and other necessary officers from 13 among its members. 14 (d) The members of the board appointed by the governor under (a)(1) of this 15 section serve three-year terms and may be reappointed. Terms shall be staggered. 16 (e) The members of the board appointed by the governor under (a)(1) of this 17 section serve at the pleasure of the governor. A vacancy on the board occurring other 18 than by expiration of a term shall be filled in the same manner as the original 19 appointment, but for the unexpired term only. 20 (f) Six voting members of the board appointed under this section constitute a 21 quorum for the transaction of business and the exercise of the powers and duties of the 22 board. 23 (g) Board members do not receive a salary, but are entitled to per diem and 24 travel expenses authorized by law for other state boards and commissions under 25 AS 39.20.180. 26 (h) The board shall meet at least four times a year. A meeting of the board 27 shall occur at the call of the chair, or upon the written request of two voting members 28 of the board, and shall be open to the public. 29 Sec. 44.33.933. Employment of personnel. The board may employ and 30 determine the salary of an executive director. The executive director may, with the 31 approval of the board, select and employ additional staff as necessary. The executive
01 director and employees of the board are in the exempt service under AS 39.25. An 02 employee of the board may not, during the employee's employment by the board, be 03 employed by an entity that purchases at wholesale a service that uses the broadband 04 system facilitated, upgraded, planned, financed, installed, owned, operated, or 05 promoted by the corporation. 06 Sec. 44.33.935. Powers and duties of the board. In carrying out the powers 07 of the corporation, the board may 08 (1) adopt, alter, and use a corporate seal; 09 (2) prescribe, adopt, amend, and repeal bylaws; 10 (3) sue and be sued in the name of the corporation; 11 (4) enter into any agreements necessary to exercise its powers and 12 functions; 13 (5) cooperate with a public or private board, organization, or agency 14 engaged in work or activities similar to the work or activities of the corporation; 15 (6) receive contributions of money from persons, including agencies or 16 instrumentalities of federal, state, or local governments; 17 (7) establish offices in the state and otherwise incur expenses 18 incidental to the performance of its duties; 19 (8) acquire, hold, lease, sell, or otherwise dispose of property 20 necessary to facilitate, upgrade, plan, finance, install, own, operate, or promote a 21 broadband system or necessary for the administrative functioning of the office of the 22 corporation; 23 (9) establish and maintain one or more bank accounts for the 24 transaction of the corporation's business. 25 Sec. 44.33.937. Executive Budget Act. The operating budget of the 26 corporation shall be prepared and submitted in accordance with AS 37.07 (Executive 27 Budget Act). 28 Sec. 44.33.939. Duties of the corporation. (a) The corporation shall sell 29 middle mile transport services on a broadband system it facilitates, upgrades, plans, 30 finances, installs, owns, operates, or promotes to retail service providers 31 (1) at a wholesale price; and
01 (2) with just, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory rates, terms, and 02 conditions. 03 (b) The corporation may not allow an entity, together with its affiliates, to 04 lease, purchase, or control 05 (1) more than one-third of the total capacity on a middle mile route on 06 a broadband system facilitated, upgraded, planned, financed, installed, owned, 07 operated, upgraded, or promoted by the corporation; or 08 (2) more than one half of the capacity available on a broadband system 09 facilitated, planned, financed, installed, owned, operated, or promoted by the 10 corporation. 11 (c) The corporation shall, if possible, comply with the necessary federal 12 regulations to be able to receive money from a universal services fund established to 13 achieve the principles set out in 47 U.S.C. 254. 14 Sec. 44.33.940. Alaska Broadband Task Force and Working Group. (a) 15 The Alaska Broadband Task Force is established in the Department of Commerce, 16 Community, and Economic Development. The task force consists of nine members 17 appointed by the governor, as follows: 18 (1) four representatives of state, municipal, or other local government 19 agencies responsible for information technology, economic development, 20 infrastructure development, and public utility regulation; 21 (2) five representatives of technology, telecommunications, and 22 investment businesses doing business in the state. 23 (b) The task force established under (a) of this section 24 (1) may begin work immediately after a majority of the membership is 25 appointed; 26 (2) shall 27 (A) determine the current level of broadband access in the 28 urban and rural areas of the state; 29 (B) determine an acceptable level of broadband service 30 throughout the state; 31 (C) determine the means for increasing the level of service,
01 including regulatory changes and investment incentives for areas that are 02 below the acceptable level determined in (B) of this paragraph; 03 (D) explore the potential for increased use of high-speed 04 broadband service for the purposes of education and health care delivery and 05 other private and governmental uses; 06 (E) solicit suggestions from persons engaged in the 07 development of broadband infrastructure and operation of high-speed 08 broadband services for expanding the availability of broadband service in the 09 state; 10 (F) study all means for delivering high-speed broadband 11 service; 12 (G) establish best practices to establish and maintain a database 13 that lists current broadband service providers and where each operates, projects 14 that are currently being developed, and projects that are in the planning and 15 predevelopment stage; 16 (H) explore ways for encouraging state and municipal agencies 17 to expand the development and use of high-speed broadband services, 18 including audio and video streaming, voice-over Internet protocol, 19 teleconferencing, and wireless networking; 20 (I) deliver a report of the initial findings and recommendations 21 for expanding access to high-speed broadband services throughout the state to 22 the senate secretary and the chief clerk of the house of representatives and 23 notify the legislature that the report is available before December 31, 2017; 24 (J) submit a final report of findings and recommendations for 25 expanding access to high-speed broadband services throughout the state to the 26 senate secretary and the chief clerk of the house of representatives and notify 27 the legislature that the report is available before February 1, 2018. 28 (c) Members of the task force shall select a chair and vice-chair. 29 Administrative support for the task force shall be provided by staff designated jointly 30 by the president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives. 31 (d) A vacancy on the task force or working group shall be filled in the same
01 manner as the original appointment under (a)(1) and (2) and (e)(1) - (8) of this section. 02 (e) The task force shall have a public finance working group directed to 03 develop a finance plan, including service charges or state or federal funding, sufficient 04 to implement the recommendations of the Alaska Broadband Task Force. The working 05 group consists of 06 (1) the commissioner of commerce, community, and economic 07 development; 08 (2) one member who represents the private banking industry, 09 appointed by the chair of the working group; 10 (3) one member who represents the investment banking industry, 11 appointed by the chair of the working group; 12 (4) one member who represents the University of Alaska and has 13 experience in broadband financing, appointed by the chair of the working group; 14 (5) one member who represents the Regulatory Commission of Alaska, 15 appointed by the chair of the working group; 16 (6) one member who represents the executive branch, appointed by the 17 chair of the working group; 18 (7) one member who represents the senate, appointed by the president 19 of the senate; 20 (8) one member who represents the house of representatives, appointed 21 by the speaker of the house of representatives. 22 (f) The public finance working group shall 23 (1) be chaired by the member who represents the executive branch; 24 (2) hold a meeting at least once a year that is open to the public; and 25 (3) submit a final report of findings and recommendations to the task 26 force before January 3, 2017. 27 (g) A member of the task force or working group who is not a full-time 28 employee of the state or a municipality is entitled to per diem and travel expenses 29 authorized for boards and commissions under AS 39.20.180. 30 Sec. 44.33.945. Definitions. In AS 44.33.925 - 44.33.945, 31 (1) "board" means the board of the Broadband Development
01 Corporation; 02 (2) "corporation" means the Broadband Development Corporation.