Telephone companies would be freed from maintaining their landline networks in
urban areas under a bill that passed the state House by a wide margin. Kentucky
Supporters, led by Democratic Rep. Rick Rand of
, said the bill guarantees that
landline phone customers in rural areas can keep their service if they wish. Bedford
The measure passed the House on a 71-25 vote Tuesday. It now goes to the Senate.
Gov. Steve Beshear hailed the House vote and called on the Senate to pass the bill quickly.
Beshear says the measure strikes a balance between providing consumer protection and creating economic development opportunities spinning off from expanding broadband access.
Rand says the bill will spur more investment in broadband networks across
Opponents say there's no guarantee of added investments.