Sputtering Debate Over NC Internet Access May Have New Urgency

Sputtering Debate Over NC Internet Access May Have New Urgency

Broadband will be a hot topic at this year’s General Assembly session, with many touting high-speed Internet access as the key to economic development for North Carolina’s small towns and rural regions. “Leaping the Digital Divide,” a 39-page report by the NC League of Municipalities, highlights technology disparities driven partly by the increasing integration of online resources in education, health care and business. “We continue to talk about the urban-rural divide and we think we can solve it with money or by luring companies to rural areas,” said state Rep. John Szoka, R-Cumberland, sponsor of The BRIGHT Futures Act. “That really isn’t the answer. The answer in today’s day and age is to get the whole state connected to high-speed broadband. Without that we lose a really valuable tool to drawing companies to rural areas.”
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