Senator Valesky Applauds New Rural Broadband Law

David J. Valesky

July 28, 2006

A bill that encourages rural broadband development, which Sen. David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) cosponsored in the Senate, has been signed into law. This new law will do more than just help bring high-speed Internet access to rural communities. It will encourage rural job retention and expand economic opportunities.

"Broadband access is an important tool in rural economic development and job retention," said Sen. Valesky. "Our local businesses need broadband access to compete in the global marketplace. This new law will help hasten private and public investment in this increasingly vital infrastructure."

Broadband access will help provide rural communities with basic infrastructure needed to lure businesses and jobs to the region. It will also ensure that existing businesses, increasingly facing the challenges of globalization and expanding markets, have access to this important tool.

This law specifically directs the New York State Department of Economic Development to work with other departments, state agencies and private industry to develop financial and other incentives to expand broadband service to underserved rural areas of the state.

"High speed Internet access is more than a matter of convenience, it is an economic necessity," said Sen. Valesky. "When it comes to rural economic development, broadband Internet access is a vital part of our job retention and economic growth strategy."

This new broadband law is just one of several bills dealing with specific rural issues that Sen. Valesky cosponsored this year, along with other members of the New York State Legislative Commission on Rural Resources. This bipartisan commission is made up of 10 members of the Senate and the Assembly who represent districts that are mostly rural.