It is unclear what the Legislature will do in the upcoming session. However, two bills became law in 2015. LD 1063 made some key changes to the ConnectME Authority, a component of Maine state government charged with facilitating the universal availability to all Maine residents. In particular, the bill provided for funding of broadband planning grants to municipalities, groups of municipalities and other regional organizations.
LD 1185, meanwhile, created a Municipal Broadband Access Fund to help address the acute need for ultra-high speed Internet infrastructure. While the fund only has an initial capital infusion of $500.
These were modest steps forward, but they were steps forward.