Decision Maker Response

Edwin Lee’s response

Nov 26, 2013 — Thank you for signing the petition on and participating in the conversation regarding fiber broadband and internet connectivity in San Francisco.

Amongst my highest priorities is to ensure that all our residents have the tools and skills they need to succeed in the 21st Century economy. That’s why I support the expansion of high speed, broadband internet to all our City’s residents. Expanding internet connectivity will ensure San Francisco residents have immediate access to educational, economic, and workforce development opportunities as well as access to important information on essential human services such as healthcare, etc. Providing internet connectivity and high speed internet to all our City’s diverse communities is an important step to ensure that San Francisco remains a City where everyone can succeed.

San Francisco currently has 130 miles of fiber optic cable beneath its streets. This fiber network provides high-speed internet to many of our City’s municipal buildings, neighborhood firehouses, police stations, recreational facilities, science facilities like The Exploratorium and the Academy of Sciences and educational institutions like UCSF, San Francisco State University and San Francisco City College. And, I’m proud that 88% of our City’s households are already connected to the Internet.

But I know we can do better.

That’s why earlier this year, I embraced FCC Chairman Genachowski’s “gigabit city” challenge and at the 81st Annual Meeting of the US Conference of Mayors, I introduced a resolution to support increased access to broadband and spectrum as essential steps to continually encourage innovation, drive economic growth, and remain competitive in the 21st Century global economy.

Just this past summer, we announced a partnership with Google to extend free wireless internet access to 31 public parks and plazas across San Francisco. This effort builds on the existing free public internet access - that has been available since 2005 - at 28 public libraries, the DeYoung Museum, Legion of Honor, Laguna Honda Hospital, and City Hall.

Today, we are currently developing a strategic plan to further expand connectivity for the public benefit in various locations across the City. And, as we continue to develop our plan for connectivity, I welcome the opportunity to work collaboratively with organizations and members of the public in ensuring that internet connectivity and high speed internet is accessible for all our residents.

Thank you again for your participation in this conversation.