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Rural broadband access to be studied by working group

—By Kathleen M. Dutro
Public Relations Team

The availability of broadband Internet access in rural Indiana is a topic that’s starting to receive some attention, according to Katrina Hall, Indiana Farm Bureau’s state government relations director.

Hall has been appointed to the newly formed Rural Broadband Working Group, which is being led by the lieutenant governor.

“We’re exploring the question ‘How might we increase broadband connectivity in rural Indiana?’” Hall explained. Among the variables being considered are actual demand for broadband, what kind of broadband is available (e.g., satellite, fiber or wireless), whether the available broadband is adequate, cost, and how common it is for a cell phone to be a household’s primary or only means of accessing the internet.

“At some point soon, we will be asking members a few questions about their use of broadband Internet services. It will boil down to, ‘If you’re not using broadband, why not?’” Hall explained.

“The bottom-line question is, ‘Is the lack of broadband making a difference in your family’s daily pursuits and especially in your farming operation?’” she said.

Members who are unsure what broadband is available to them can find out at www.indianabroadband.com.

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