Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will invest $65 billion to bring universal, reliable, high-speed, and affordable internet coverage to every family in America
As students across Georgia prepare to return to the classroom, many families in rural communities still don’t have reliable, affordable broadband access for children to complete their homework. Moreover, lack of internet access poses a barrier to job opportunities for families still struggling in the wake of the pandemic. The need for internet infrastructure is clearer than ever, and President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal is the investment Georgia needs to help close the digital divide.
More than 507,000 Georgia homes and businesses still do not have access to high-speed internet, and 70% of those are in rural areas. In Georgia school systems with fewer than 1,000 students, 56% of households do not have high speed internet available. To provide rural communities across the country the connectivity they need, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will invest $65 billion to bring universal, reliable, highspeed, and affordable coverage to every family in America.
The bill will help lower prices for internet service by requiring funding recipients to offer a low-cost affordable plan, by creating price transparency and helping families comparison shop, and by boosting competition in areas where existing providers aren’t providing adequate service. It will also help close the digital divide by passing the Digital Equity Act, ending digital redlining, and creating a permanent program to help more low-income households access the internet.
“To receive the broadband investments Georgia needs, Congress must pass President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal,” said State Senator Freddie Powell-Sims, who represents several very rural counties in Southwest Georgia. “I’ve seen firsthand how a lack of internet makes life more difficult for so many Georgia families. We need to make critical investments in internet infrastructure so we can finally close the digital divide. Broadband is an issue above partisanship, which is why both parties must come to the table to pass this critical bill.”
“Expanding broadband access is a bipartisan issue in Georgia, which is why it’s time for Georgia Republicans to support President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal,” Rhyan Lake, spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia, said. “For too long, rural communities in Georgia have been disconnected from the rest of the state, restricting them from crucial resources like economic and educational opportunities and accessible health services. No one should have to drive down the road to get the internet service they need, especially in 2021. Washington must now come together and pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal to provide Georgia with the investments we need to connect with the rest of the world.”