PRINTER'S NO. 412
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
392
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY FARNESE, LEACH, TARTAGLIONE, HUGHES, COSTA,
BREWSTER AND SCHWANK, MARCH 13, 2019
REFERRED TO CONSUMER PROTECTION AND PROFESSIONAL LICENSURE,
MARCH 13, 2019
AN ACT
Providing for disclosure requirements for broadband Internet
access service providers, for prohibitions and for contracts,
grants and tax credits; and imposing civil penalties.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Short title.
This act shall be known and may be cited as the Open Internet
Protection Act.
Section 2. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Broadband Internet access service." As follows:
(1) The term includes any of the following:
(i) A mass-market retail service by wire or radio
that provides the capability to transmit data to and
receive data from all or substantially all Internet
endpoints, including capabilities that are incidental to
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and enable the operation of the communications service.
(ii) A service that the Federal Communications
Commission determines to provide the functional
equivalent of the service described under subparagraph
(i) or used to evade the provisions of this act.
(2) The term does not include dial-up Internet access
service.
"Commonwealth agency." As defined in 62 Pa.C.S. ยง 103
(relating to definitions).
"Edge provider." A person or entity that provides any of the
following:
(1) Content, application or services over the Internet.
(2) A device used for accessing content, applications or
services over the Internet.
"End user." A person or entity that uses a broadband
Internet access service.
"Paid prioritization." The management of a provider's
network to directly or indirectly favor some Internet traffic
over other Internet traffic, including through the use of
techniques such as Internet traffic shaping, prioritization,
resource reservation or other forms of preferential Internet
traffic management, in exchange for economic consideration from
a third party or to benefit an affiliated entity.
"Provider." A person or entity that provides broadband
Internet access service to end users in this Commonwealth.
"Reasonable network management." A practice that has a
primarily technical network management justification and is
primarily used for and tailored to achieve a legitimate network
management purpose considering the particular network
architecture and technology of the broadband Internet access
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service. The term does not include other business practices.
Section 3. Disclosure requirements for providers.
A provider shall publicly disclose accurate information
regarding network management practices, performance and
commercial terms of the provider's broadband Internet access
services to ensure the following:
(1) Consumers are able to make informed choices
regarding use of the broadband Internet access services.
(2) Edge providers are able to develop, market and
maintain content, applications and service offerings.
Section 4. Prohibitions on providers.
Except for the purpose of reasonable network management, a
provider may not engage in any of the following acts:
(1) Blocking lawful content, applications, services or
nonharmful devices.
(2) Impairing or degrading lawful Internet traffic on
the basis of content, applications, services or use of
nonharmful devices.
(3) Paid prioritization.
(4) Unreasonably interfering or disadvantaging the
ability of an end user to select, access or use broadband
Internet access service or lawful Internet content,
applications, services or nonharmful devices of the end
user's choice.
(5) Unreasonably interfering or disadvantaging the
ability of a provider to make lawful Internet content,
applications, services or nonharmful devices available to end
users.
Section 5. Contracts, grants and tax credits for providers.
(a) Contracts and grants.--Notwithstanding any other
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provision of law, a Commonwealth agency or political subdivision
may not contract with or award grants or tax credits to a
provider that fails to comply with this act.
(b) Applicability.--This section shall apply to contracts
executed and grants and tax credits awarded on or after the
effective date of this act.
Section 6. Civil penalties.
A provider that fails to comply with this act shall be in
violation of the act of December 17, 1968 (P.L.1224, No.387),
known as the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law.
Section 7. Effective date.
This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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