//Internet Plan Seeks to Close Gap in Rural “Digital Divide”

Internet Plan Seeks to Close Gap in Rural “Digital Divide”

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By Tiara Battle

ATLANTA – The Georgia Department of Community Affairs revealed a plan this month that would give around 1.6 million residents Internet lines.

Several Georgia residents including officials agree that Internet is very crucial when it comes to maintaining businesses and closing the gap with losses in population. Although this plan may be years away, this development could not only help businesses but schools, hospitals and farmers.

But different locations call for different measures and the effort should be a “partnership,” among the different providers in the state according to Commissioner Christopher Nunn.

Nunn says that it will, “move the state closer.”

The 14-Page Blueprint Calls For:

  • A Piece of $600 Million Federal to Internet Providers
  • $3 Billion in Public and Private Investments
  • Map of Locations Without High-Speed Internet

The blueprint for the Georgia Broadband Plan can be found here.

While this plan is in the works, there are at least five rural projects pursuing funding from the federal government. The applicants who win would receive at most $25 million per applicant.

These types of projects indicate how important access to reliable Internet is.

Reliable Internet can be especially important when it comes to small businesses. One Saturday, Internet went down for a business, which resulted in a loss of sales because credit card transactions couldn’t process.

Situations such as these force businesses and residents to relocate.

Senior Vice President for Georgia EMC, Bill Verner, believes that the plan will close the gap in the, “digital divide.”