Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Senator Durbin Responds To My Letter RE Net Neutrality

May 23, 2018

Mr. William Rosen

Dear Mr. Rosen:

          Thank you for contacting me to share your views about net neutrality.  I appreciate hearing from you.

          In February 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to adopt new net neutrality rules that would preserve the internet as an open platform for consumer choice and competition.  These rules prohibited Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from blocking or slowing down customers' access to websites and banned ISPs from charging content providers for faster delivery of certain information to users.

         The FCC adopted these rules by taking a regulatory step to reclassify broadband service under Title II of the Telecommunications Act.  Reclassification of broadband under Title II provided the agency with much broader authority to establish strong net neutrality rules and allowed broadband services to be treated as a public utility.  Opponents argue the reclassification was an overreach of the agency's authority and will increase taxes on consumers.       
          On May 18, 2017, the FCC voted to adopt the proposed rule, Restoring Internet Freedom (Docket 17-108).  The rule rolled back many of the central tenants of net neutrality.  The rule also repealed regulations allowing the FCC to investigate suspected anti-competitive business practices of ISPs.  
          In December of 2017, I joined 38 of my Senate Democratic colleagues in a letter calling on FCC Chairman Pai to abandon his plan to repeal the agency's net neutrality rules. However, on December 14, 2017, despite millions of public comments opposing the action and over the objections of tech companies like Netflix, Reddit, and Etsy, the FCC voted along party lines to repeal the net neutrality rules.
          The rollback of net neutrality threatens access to a free and open internet.  This action amounts to the FCC letting ISPs pick winners and losers, charge people more for service, and even block certain parts of the internet.   
          I am a cosponsor of S.J. Res. 52, a Congressional Review Act joint resolution introduced by Senator Ed Markey that would have reversed the FCC's harmful action of repealing net neutrality rules.
          The FCC officially published the rollback of net neutrality in the Federal Register on February 22, 2018.  On May 9, 2018, I joined 48 of my Senate colleagues in signing a discharge petition to allow for a vote on the Senate floor to save net neutrality.  
          On May 16, 2018, the Senate passed S.J. Res. 52, disapproving of the FCC's rollback of net neutrality rules by a vote of 52-47.  I supported this measure because I believe that a transparent and fairly managed flow of information benefits a growing economy and is essential to a true democracy.  S.J. Res. 52 is now in the House of Representatives, and I urge my colleagues in the House to support the concept of net neutrality.
          I will keep your thoughts in mind as we continue the fight to support a free and open internet. 
          Thank you again for contacting me.  Please feel free to keep in touch.


      Richard J. Durbin
      United States Senator

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Bernstein and Broadway Is Next Week!

Bernstein and Broadway – Saturday, March 10, 2018 – 7:00pm
Windy City Performing Arts and Windy City Treble Quire present “Bernstein and Broadway” featuring the “Chichester Psalms” by Bernstein. It is the quintessential 20th-century American setting of the most famous psalms featuring organ, harp, and percussion. The musical theater works of Bernstein and others rounds out the program with selections featuring diverse composers and shows.
St James Cathedral
65 E Huron St.,Chicago, IL 60611
Ticket Prices:
In advance from Brown Paper Tickets: $35 Reserved Seating, $20 General Admission
At the door: $25 General Admission, $15 Seniors 65+, $10 Students with ID/Children 6-17, Free for Children 5 and under