Applaud Governor’s Historic $7 Billion “Catalytic Investment for Generational Change”
Sacramento, Calif. – Today, Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry (D- Winters) and Senator Lena A. Gonzalez (D- Long Beach) applauded Governor Newsom’s historic investment of $7 billion in funds for broadband within the new released May Revise budget proposal. Under the proposal, existing Caltrans networks will be leveraged to build open-access broadband infrastructure as roads and underground utilities are constructed. This will maximize funds and ensure a quick and efficient deployment of modern, durable, high-speed internet infrastructure. Funds will also be made available to assist local governments and tribes building their own broadband infrastructure, and to help increase access to high quality broadband service in rural areas.
The partnership between these two Legislators laid the policy framework for the Governor’s proposal in Aguiar-Curry’s AB 14 Internet for All Act, and Gonzalez’ SB 4, Broadband for All Act.
“This is truly an historic day for our State and a bold proposal to address the gap in access to reliable and affordable internet for all Californians,” said Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry (D-Winters). “People across our state, especially in small towns and rural areas like those in my district, have struggled to take advantage of the digital economy. The pandemic has made painfully obvious that a lack of connectivity prevents access to equitable opportunities for our people – education and job training, telehealth, small businesses’ expanding to online consumers. I want to thank the Governor for his incredible commitment to connecting California, Senator Gonzalez for her leadership and partnership with me on this critical effort, and so many of our colleagues who’ve joined us in making the dream of Internet for All a reality.”
“Closing the digital divide is a tremendous passion of mine and I am proud to have worked with my colleagues in the Legislature to author a letter earlier this week to request major investments for broadband infrastructure,” said Senator Lena Gonzalez (D-Long Beach). “I am very happy to see our state taking bold moves in the right direction to tackle the digital divide, and I thank Governor Newsom for his leadership in proposing a budget that highlights the importance of this issue by allocating significant funds to address the need for the deployment of 21st Century broadband infrastructure. I look forward to building off this momentum and continuing to advance legislation that reforms and advances policies that will bring high-speed internet to California families that need it most.”
Aguiar-Curry wanted to especially thank Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) for making broadband deployment a first-tier priority for the Assembly’s Democratic Caucus this year and her colleagues who joined her in authoring AB 14 -- Joint Authors Assemblymembers Richard Bloom, now-Attorney General Rob Bonta, Cristina Garcia, Eduardo Garcia, Evan Low, Cottie Petrie-Norris, Bill Quirk, Sharon Quirk-Silva, Eloise Reyes, Robert Rivas, Miguel Santiago, Mark Stone and now-Secrtary of State Shirley Weber; Principal Coauthors Assemblymembers Rebecca Bauer-Kahan, Wendy Carillo and Jacqui Irwin, and Senators Susan Eggman and Lena Gonzalez; and, Coauthors Assemblymembers Autumn Burke, Al Muratsuchi, Blanca Rubio, Buffy Wicks, Jim Wood and Carlos Villapudua, and Senators Monique Limon and Mike McGuire.
Aguiar-Curry represents the 4th Assembly District, which includes all of Lake and Napa Counties, parts of Colusa, Solano and Sonoma Counties, and all of Yolo County except West Sacramento. www.asm.ca.gov/aguiar-curry