ACLP Releases Profile of Broadband in New York

A summary of ACLP’s NY Broadband Connectivity Profile

Michael Santorelli, Alex Karras


October 20, 2023

The ACLP at New York Law School has released a Profile of broadband connectivity in New York.


The profile:

  • Evaluates the evolution of the state’s legal and regulatory approach to broadband. The Profile notes that, in general, the state has gotten a lot right vis-à-vis broadband policy, largely because the state has avoided unnecessary overreach.
  • Highlights the state’s robust record of efficiently administering previous grant programs. The success of these programs stemmed largely from the state’s focus on leveraging expert ISPs and encouraging the using of public-private partnerships to effectively deploy available resources.
  • Evaluates the limited role that non-traditional ISPs, including municipalities, have played in bringing broadband to almost every New Yorker. The track-record of municipal broadband in New York is sparse given New York’s long-time focus on supporting private provision of internet services. The Profile examines a number of recent and ongoing municipal broadband attempts.
  • Offers a data-driven assessment of broadband availability and adoption in the state. Broadband connectivity is generally robust in New York, but discrete challenges on both the supply-side and demand-side remain.


To address remaining connectivity challenges, the Profile offers the following recommendations:

  • Prioritize grant funding for last-mile deployments in unserved areas;
  • Avoid subsidizing the overbuilding of middle-mile networks;
  • Deploy a robust and inclusive BEAD challenge process;
  • Use the BEAD process to address remaining policy impediments to the efficient deployment of broadband networks;
  • Engage in much-needed reforms to the state’s pole attachment regime;
  • Strictly define the parameters of the state’s forthcoming assistance program for municipal broadband projects;
  • Assure robust, inclusive, and comprehensive digital equity planning;
  • Promote the availability of subsidies to offset the cost of a broadband subscription and device;
  • Leverage available digital equity funds to scale proven adoption and training programs;
  • Assure the long-term sustainability of grant-funded digital equity programs; and
  • Implement robust safeguards to reduce waste, fraud, and abuse in the administration of digital equity grants.

Michael Santorelli is the Director of the ACLP. Alex Karras is a Senior Fellow at the ACLP.