Governor Creates New State Task Force on Broadband Access
Gov. Tony Evers signed Executive Order #80 on Tuesday to create the Governor’s Task Force on Broadband Access.
It will advise the governor and Wisconsin State Legislature on broadband actions and policy, including strategies for successfully expanding high-speed internet access to every residence, business and institution in the state; initiatives for digital inclusion; and pathways to unlocking and optimizing the benefits of statewide, affordable access to broadband for all Wisconsin communities.
Broadband access is an essential catalyst to drive community, public safety, learning, health and economic goals across the state, and, as outlined in a recent Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation report, it will be critical to the state’s economic recovery from the pandemic. Severe consequences result from a lack of connectivity.
According to the Federal Communications Commission’s 2020 Broadband Deployment Report, 7.1 percent of Wisconsin residents lack access to at least one broadband service with a speed of 25/3 Mbps or more, compared to the national average of 5.6 percent. This percentage deepens in rural areas, where 26.7 percent of Wisconsin residents lack access to at least one broadband service.