Assembly Bill A1260 Envisions a Brighter Future for Broadband Infrastructure

Dryden, NY Earlier today, Assemblymember Kelles and local Dryden officials celebrated the passage of A1260, a ground-breaking piece of legislation introduced during the 2023 legislative session, which promises to reshape the telecommunications landscape, ushering in a new era of connectivity and economic opportunity for residents across the state.

Assembly Bill A1260, sponsored by Assemblymember Kelles and Senator May, represents a bold and visionary step forward in the state's commitment to addressing the digital divide. The bill recognizes the indispensable role that broadband and related telecommunications infrastructure play in today's interconnected world. With a primary focus on extending broadband access to underserved and rural areas, A1260 sets a course for a more inclusive and prosperous future for all residents of New York.

Dan Lamb, Deputy Town Supervisor of Dryden said, “Dryden Fiber could not happen without strong support from our state partners. We’re grateful to Assemblymember Anna Kelles, for once again, stepping up for Dryden and getting this important legislation across the finish line.”

Assemblymember Anna Kelles stated, “I am delighted that municipalities like Dryden can continue to grow and offer municipal broadband to residents in the town and in more rural areas. In a market that has long been an oligopoly of a few large providers, enabling municipalities to bond the construction costs of laying fiber optic cable infrastructure will create a necessary shift towards broadband as a public good not as a right of the privileged. Access to internet service is incredibly important, particularly coming out of the pandemic where our work, education, and even social lives shifted significantly into digital spaces. I am proud to work with local governments who are leading the charge in ensuring equitable access to reliable broadband.”

Dryden is a great example of this effort where municipal fiber optic cable will allow 400 megabytes per second upload and download speeds starting at $45 per month. Additional options allow upload and download speeds of 1 gigabyte per second, both upload and download, for $90 per month. Dryden Fiber aims to reduce these costs as more and more residents sign up to participate in the program. 

Senator Rachel May, the Senator sponsor of this bill stated, “High-speed broadband service is a 21st century necessity, critical for learning, business, and entertainment. All New York residents must have access to it. This bill expands the financing options for a proven model of delivering broadband directly by municipalities. This will especially help in areas that are not currently being served adequately, and I encourage all municipalities to see if this option makes sense for them. Thank you to Governor Hochul for signing this critical bill and Assemblymember Anna Kelles for your hard work in moving it through the Assembly.”

Senator Lea Webb said, "The passage of this legislation marks a significant stride towards bridging the digital divide in New York. In an increasingly interconnected world, access to broadband, especially in rural communities, is not just a convenience; it's an essential lifeline for education, business, and daily life," said Senator Lea Webb. "This bill underscores our commitment to ensuring that every resident, regardless of their ZIP Code, has the opportunity to thrive in this digital age. I commend Governor Hochul for signing this pivotal bill, and I extend my gratitude to Senator May and Assemblymember Kelles for their dedication in advancing it through the Legislature. Together, we're laying the foundation for a more inclusive and prosperous future for all New Yorkers."

To view a recording of today's presser, click here.