HB 2423

86(R) - 2019

Vote Recommendation

  • Negative
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Negative
  • Neutral


Charles Anderson
John Cyrier
Tracy King
Poncho Nevarez
Four Price

Bill Caption

Relating to the creation of the broadband office within the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the establishment of a broadband service investment grant program.

Fiscal Notes

Estimated Two-year Net Impact to General Revenue Related Funds for HB 2423, Committee Report 1st House, Substituted: a negative impact of ($1,178,900) through the biennium ending August 31, 2021. The cost impact of the Broadband Investment Account cannot be determined because it would depend on the level of appropriations, gifts, grants, donations and interest earned. The bill would make no appropriation but could provide the legal basis for an appropriation of funds to implement the provisions of the bill.

Bill Analysis

HB 2423 would establish a new "broadband office" within the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and authorize the PUC to hire employees to carry out the duties of the office. (The Legislative Budget Board mentions in the fiscal note that five new full time equivalent employees would be needed for this purpose.)

The broadband office would facilitate and coordinate efforts of state agencies, schools, hospitals, and local governments to develop proposals for broadband service investment and deployment strategies in unserved areas in rural communities, promote and coordinate public sector and private sector broadband service solutions, etc.

The bill would create a grant program and requisite framework for the program to provide grants to applicants for the expansion of access to broadband service in areas that are unserved.

Vote Recommendation Notes

Texas Action opposes HB 2423 for violating our principles limited government and the free market. This bill would enact undue government interference in the free market and at the expense of taxpayers. This would grow the size, cost, and scope of government to perform a role that is not a core or proper function of government. While broadband access in rural areas is a desirable thing, it is not the proper role of government to provide for this.