I wrote about the community broadband meeting in Fillmore County last week. I see that it also made the Fillmore County Journal. Much of the information we covered was similar. It was interesting to see the explanation of unserved areas…
Ryan Yetzer, who currently works for CEDA and has worked for the state, explained that the Federal Communications Commission now defines broadband as 25 mbps download and 3 mbps upload. The state defines broadband served areas as those with wireline connections of at least 100 mbps/20 mbps, underserved areas as those with a wireline connection of at least 25 mbps/3 mbps, and unserved as those with no wireline of at least 25 mbps/3 mbps. By these definitions 41% of the households in the county are “unserved.”
Unserved areas do not allow for people to telecommute, make it difficult for small businesses, limit study by students at home, affect tourism and agriculture, and limit use of multiple devices and entertainment opportunities. “Broadband enabled 39.7% of all new jobs from 2013-2015.”
The lack of high speed internet access affects the sale of homes. People may decide to leave the county to get better internet access or make a decision not to move into an area with poor access. High speed internet availability will be a factor when young people decide whether or not to build a future in the area of their childhood.