Breckenridge Texan

Local residents encouraged to complete online survey about internet access

Local residents encouraged to complete online survey about internet access
April 28
11:31 2022

Earlier this month, Stephens County Judge Michael Roach and Breckenridge Economic Development Corporation CEO Colton Buckley met with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar in Abilene to discuss the importance of accessible and affordable broadband internet in rural Texas. Now, local citizens can provide their input to the Comptroller through an online survey.

Roach, Buckley and Hegar are encouraging Breckenridge and Stephens County residents — as well as other Texans — to share their thoughts about broadband services in their communities via an online survey or by calling 833-3-TEXBDO (839236).

The meeting in Abilene was part of Hegar’s Texas Broadband Listening Tour.

“Both the County and the EDC are dedicated partners in bringing Stephens County to the forefront of broadband expansion,” Buckley said in an online post about the meeting.

The tour, which will help guide the strategic vision of Texas’ new Broadband Development Office began March 1 in Prairie View and has taken Hegar to a dozen communities across the state; it wraps up today in San Angelo. The meetings around the state are helping him collect input from Texans to develop the state’s first broadband plan.

The plan is due to the state Legislature by June 15, so the Comptroller’s office says it is urgent that Texans complete the survey as soon as possible to ensure their feedback can be included.

“I find that the key to good communication is to listen more than you talk, and so these townhalls have helped us hear directly from Texans,” Hegar said in a news release. “So far, the sentiment is consistent –– Slow data speed, unreliable access, cost and coordination are critical areas of concern.”

The Broadband Development Office was established during the regular session of the 87th Legislature to award grants, low-interest loans and other financial incentives to expand access to broadband service across the state.

The office also will do the following:

  • create and update a state broadband plan for closing the digital divide in Texas;
  • create a broadband map indicating areas eligible for financial assistance;
  • secure federal funding for broadband expansion initiatives;
  • engage in outreach to communities regarding the expansion and adoption of broadband service and the programs administered by the BDO;
  • serve as the state’s subject matter expert for federal funding to help local communities expand access; and
  • create and administer the Texas broadband pole replacement program aimed at bringing broadband to unserved areas of the state.

For more information about the BDO, go to the Comptroller’s website.

 

Cutline, top photo: Stephens County Judge Michael Roach, left, and Breckenridge Economic Development Corporation CEO Colton Buckley, right, met with Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar, center, in Abilene on April 7 to discuss the importance of accessible and affordable broadband internet in rural Texas. (Courtesy photo)

 


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