Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai will deliver the keynote address for the Maine Heritage Policy Center, a conservative research organization, at a fundraising luncheon in September.

The center announced Pai’s appearance in a statement Tuesday that noted his controversial role in ending the FCC’s net neutrality regulations and touted his efforts to eliminate fraud, waste and abuse in federal programs.

Net neutrality required internet service providers to treat all data on the internet equally and prohibited them from blocking, slowing or charging more based on content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment or method of communication. Under the new regulation, which is currently the subject of several federal lawsuits, ISPs can manipulate data as it travels over their infrastructures as long as they disclose that manipulation to consumers.

Pai was appointed to the chairman’s post by President Trump, although he served on the commission prior as an appointee of former President Barack Obama.

Pai will attend the center’s 2018 Freedom & Opportunity Luncheon at the Holiday Inn by the Bay in Portland on Sept. 14 from noon to 2 p.m. Tickets to attend the event are $150.

“The FCC Chairman’s regulatory philosophy is informed by a few simple principles, competition paramount among them,” the center stated. “Rules that reflect these principles spur innovation and investment, Pai says, and lead to better products and services, lower prices, job creation and faster economic growth.”

Pai is a proponent of increased access to broadband internet connections for rural America and his speech will focus on the federal government’s plan to expand broadband access by streamlining the regulatory process for deploying wireless infrastructure.

Pai is a graduate of Harvard University and the University of Chicago Law School.

Scott Thistle can be contacted at 791-6330 or at:

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