Wi-fi could be alternative for broadband access

NDP Innovation, Business and Rural Development Critic Christopher Mitchelmore (MHA, The Straits-White Bay North) says it could be 20 years before every community in the province gets broadband access at the rate government’s Rural Broadband Initiative is moving.

Mitchelmore suggests that encouraging wireless development may be a faster and more effective route.

In the House of Assembly today, Mitchelmore said there are still more than 200 communities in the province without broadband access.

“The last Rural Broadband Initiative announced service for 20 communities. This year’s initiative had reduced funding of just $2M, meaning even fewer communities will gain access,” he said.

“I ask the minister how he plans for province-wide coverage by 2015 with continued cuts to the initiative.”

Mitchelmore pointed out that developing wireless service would be less expensive than building towers and stringing cables.

“I ask the Minister of Rural Development, will he commit funds for wireless development that partners small business and mobility providers for enhanced data service to rural regions?” he asked.

Associated Caucus Members: 

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