The Importance of Rural Broadband
A recent column in the Roanoke Times highlighted the difficulty of creating jobs in rural areas with this sobering statement “In 2010, 48 percent of the jobs being created in the country were in cities with more than one million people. In the six years that followed, that figure swelled to 73 percent. Only 6 percent of the nation’s new jobs were created in metro areas less than 250,000 (the Roanoke Valley weighs in at 252,672) and only 3 percent in 'non-metro' areas.”
Rural Broadband is one of the surest ways to change that. There are two important places to bring pressure. The first is the FCC. As Claude Aiken wrote in The Daily Yonder “If the FCC gets it right, hundreds of small, rural, local broadband providers will be empowered to invest in their networks – resulting in a rapid increase in the number of rural and small-town Americans who can receive broadband service in their homes and places of work. If they don't, rural America's valuable spectrum will be consumed by urban-focused phone companies.”
And the second place is state and federal infrastructure spending. Vote for a Democratic Congress and then make your voice heard about support for Rural Broadband.