California net neutrality law on hold, Becerra signs “agreement not to enforce senate bill 822”

by Steve Blum • , , ,

In a deal reached with the federal justice department and lobbyists for major telecoms companies, California attorney general Xavier Becerra agreed not to enforce senate bill 822 when it takes effect on 1 January 2019. In return, the telecoms companies and the Trump administration will push the pause button on their challenges to the law in a Sacramento federal court.

The plan is to wait until a federal appeals court in the District of Columbia rules on whether the Federal Communications Commission acted properly when it repealed net neutrality rules last year. It will be several months before that happens. If, as you might expect, that decision is further appealed, then SB 822 will remain on hold until the federal supreme court has its say.

If the DC court says the FCC’s net neutrality rollback is valid, the California suit will go ahead. Whether SB 822 also takes effect at that point will likely be determined by the federal judge hearing the case in Sacramento.

On the other hand, if the DC appeals court throws out the FCC’s decision, then the 2015 federal net neutrality rules would presumably be back in effect.