Last week, Oregon Governor Kate Brown went before the Joint Subcommittee on Transportation and Economic Development, urging lawmakers to support her call for investments to expand broadband access statewide. Brown has proposed an $118 million investment, with a focus on providing broadband access to underserved communities that, she says, have been disproportionately impacted during the pandemic. She noted that access to broadband is no longer a luxury, it’s a necessity.
“The internet has become the platform on which the world works, and broadband connectivity is becoming the universal common denominator. Important and essential for all sectors of the economy, especially at a time when remote work is becoming more widely adopted.”
Brown says the $118 million will connect 50 additional communities statewide, as well as ensure all schools across the state are connected. Brown added in addition, efforts to connect rural America will come from the Biden Administration.
“Their goal is to bring affordable reliable high speed broadband to every single American including the more than 35% of rural Americans who lack access. In the meantime, the investments we make today with state dollars set us up in a really strong position to further close the digital divide when those federal dollars reach us.”
Brown added while much progress has been made when it comes to broadband infrastructure statewide, more needs to be done.
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