Ending Net Neutrality Can Help Puerto Rico Recover, Verizon-Funded Nonprofit Proposes
Puerto Rico's already suffering economy took a massive hit when Hurricane Maria struck last month. Now, as business owners struggle to get back on their feet, the island’s chamber of commerce has an unseemly proposal for revitalizing the economy: Embrace the Trump administration’s plans for repealing current net neutrality rules.
Federal Communication Commission Chair Ajit Pai has found broad support from telecom industry groups and their surrogates in his effort to repeal the open-Internet standards established by the Obama administration. But a column from the National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce, a group funded by Verizon, appears to be the first to attempt to harness the crisis in Puerto Rico in support of repealing net neutrality safeguards.
“My organization’s interests—especially those of small businesses and entrepreneurs in Puerto Rico who now need to be afforded every advantage and opportunity to grow more than ever before—and our members’ mutual experience have made it clear that the best thing for America’s fragile economy will be for the FCC to continue its plan to repeal the unnecessary regulations,” Justin Vélez-Hagan, executive director and founder of the chamber, wrote Monday in an opinion piecepublished by The Hill.