The Comcast Corporation has released a statement applauding the House of Representatives’ final passage of a sweeping bipartisan infrastructure bill for its focus on increasing broadband access.
The bill passed in the House on Friday night, after months spent negotiating amid an internal rift among moderate and progressive Democrats. In its statement, Comcast heralded the bill as a major benefit to the United States’ economic future.
“Congress and the Biden Administration should be applauded for passage of the momentous infrastructure bill. This legislation will bring meaningful investments and jobs across the country and marks a major bipartisan effort to tackle digital equity and access in America, recognizing that broadband is a critical part of 21st century infrastructure,” said Sena Fitzmaurice, senior vice president of government communications at Comcast Corporation.
“The provisions in the final act appropriately focus on getting broadband infrastructure first to areas where it does not currently exist, while at the same time continuing to promote faster speeds and disincentivizing duplicative projects,” Fitzmaurice’s statement continues. “The bill also provides important resources to spur broadband adoption. Allowing local communities flexibility and valuing both private and publicly funded projects will be key to closing the digital divide.”
The infrastructure bill, which passed in the Senate in August, is a $1.2 trillion legislation which will deliver $550 billion of new federal investments in America’s infrastructure over five years, as well as invest $65 billion in improving the nation’s broadband infrastructure. This broadband access aims to improve internet services for rural areas, low-income families and tribal communities, bridging what Comcast calls a “digital divide.” Most of the money for broadband access will be made available to states through grants.
Along with the construction of infrastructure, the infrastructure bill provides a benefit to companies that have invested heavily in streaming content, as more Americans will gain access to their online platforms in the coming years.
The final vote on the bill was 228-206. Thirteen Republicans voted with the majority of Democrats while six Democrats voted against, including progressive Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massuchesetts and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York.