Leaders consider net neutrality protections for North Carolinians

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Imagine being charged more just to visit social media websites like Facebook and Twitter. 

It’s a possibility now that net neutrality is over.

The Obama-era regulations ended on Monday.

They required online service providers to treat all internet traffic the same.

Nine On Your Side reached out to lawmakers to see what’s being done at the state level to protect consumers.

In a statement, state Senator Jay Chaudhuri said, “My bill seeks to prohibit Internet service providers from blocking and throttling services. Given the repeal of net neutrality this week, it’s very unfortunate the General Assembly’s leadership has not scheduled a hearing for this bill that would allow citizens of our state to have access to the Internet without interference from broadband service providers.”

Senator Chaudhuri recently filed the bill he said in hopes of protecting North Carolinians and expanding educational opportunities.

The educational aspect is something Governor Roy Cooper talked about during a visit to the east on Tuesday as well as expanding public/private partnerships.

“We just need to make sure that every part of North Carolina has access to high speed internet,” said Cooper.

“My budget provided for $20 million to encourage public/private partnerships to expand broadband,” said Cooper.  The budget that the legislature is about to pass only provides $10 million. We need to do better than that.”

The governor pointed out what’s been done in public schools.

“One good thing we’ve done is connected all of our schools in North Carolina, but some of the kids that have their device in that school and get their homework in that school when they go home they don’t have access to broadband. So, we need to make sure that we expand it.”

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