An amendment was offered on the floor of the Kansas House earlier this week that was spoken about at the Democrat press availability on Friday. The idea was that any Internet Service Provider who wanted to gain a state contract would agree to Net Neutrality principles. That amendment was voted down, but Democratic leadership would still like to see the concept go forward.
“We buy a whole lot of Internet access,” said House Minority Leader Jim Ward. “There’s a lot of areas where we purchase internet services. I think by us taking that step, sending a message, the action’s important, but also the signal it sends. We support these four principles, no blocking of legal content, no throttling, which is picking and slowing some down and speeding others up, no unfair discrimination and transparency in customer practices. That’s what we were saying in that amendment, is that’s the goals and we won’t do business with companies that don’t follow those standards.”
Also, Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley let reporters present know about a meeting to take place later this month with the person responsible for the latest cost study that is being worked on for the Legislature.
“I’ve been informed by the Senate leadership that Lori Taylor, who is the expert, will be coming to town on February 23, that would be two weeks from today, where she’s going to have a meeting in the Old Supreme Court room at 10 a.m. to explain what her methodology is in putting together this study. I think this is in response to information that I’ve been given and I think Jim’s been given, that the study she conducted in Texas was very much flawed and didn’t really have any credibility.”
Hensley thinks the Republican leadership is somewhat panicked and is bringing her in for that reason.
“We’re actually not in session on that Friday,” said Hensley. “That’s the day after turnaround, but any legislator who wants to stay in Topeka to go to that meeting
will be given a voucher that they can sign to be paid. This is a big deal, in terms of them scrambling around, trying to give their expert some credibility.”
According to the Kansas Association of School Boards, Taylor will conduct the main study, which is to be completed by March 15th. Dr. Jesse Levin will then “peer review” that work, as well as reviewing the 2002 Augenblick and Myers Kansas cost study, which was a key factor in the Kansas Supreme Court’s Montoy decision in 2005; and the 2006 Kansas Legislative Post Audit cost study, which the basis of the final Legislative action the court accepted to “settle” the Montoy case in 2006.