GROWING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE
Access to high-speed broadband internet is a critical enabling condition for sustainable development of small businesses, attracting residents who utilize the internet for distance work, and attracting new industries that rely on high-speed internet. Broadband access is one part of a larger effort to build a stronger, more diverse, resilient and sustainable economy for the future across Minnesota.
Access to high-speed broadband internet is this generation’s opportunity to make a leap similar to rural electrification in the 1930s. High speed internet is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity. Greater Minnesota needs access to the broader economy and opportunities to develop products and services that are value-added and retain profits in the community. Greater Minnesota’s public health and economic stability can be improved by extending to it the best modern information infrastructure available.
According to the Governor’s Task Force on Broadband, 20% of rural Minnesota households lack access to high-speed broadband. There are a number of success stories on which to build, in meeting the goal of universal access to high-speed internet for all Minnesota residents. Lake and Cook Counties are being wired with fiber-optic cable to the door of every residence and business.
The economic development facilitated by broadband internet access encourages high-wage, high skill jobs and value-added businesses. Small manufacturers, farmers, and entrepreneurs all benefit from connection to the information economy.
It’s time to increase statewide investment in the information infrastructure that will power the growing, sustainable economy of tomorrow. Seize the opportunity to fully fund broadband development and bring all of Minnesota into the 21st Century information economy.
- Fund the Border to Border broadband initiative to make sure no community is left behind. This includes support for Governor Dayton’s request of $100 million in 2016 for the Broadband Development Grant Fund, for broadband infrastructure statewide.