Baltimore leaders: It's time to act on broadband - Baltimore


Jul. 27, 2015 1:42 pm

Baltimore leaders: It’s time to act on broadband

(Photo by Flickr user Gavin St. Ours, used under a Creative Commons license)

There’s been a lot of talk about ensuring access to faster internet in Baltimore. Now, according to a group of community leaders in a Baltimore Sun op-ed, it’s time to do something about it.

From the Monday op-ed:

We should begin by creating an independent Broadband Authority to make real the goals articulated in these important reports. This means drafting a workable plan, budget and timeline for wiring the entire city. This means devising and hitting short-term, mid-term and long-range goals, with continuous transparency about how these goals will be financed. This means, most importantly, being responsive and accountable to the people of Baltimore.

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The opinion piece, written by Robert W. Deutsch Foundation President Jane Brown, Abell Foundation President Robert Embry and Betamore CEO Jen Meyer, is a follow-up on the work of city government’s Smarter Baltimore task force.

The 27-member task force drafted two reports that outline recommendations for how Baltimore should improve access to technology, and identifies specific ways to improve the city’s existing broadband infrastructure.

The op-ed is a sign that leaders are beginning to get organized on this issue. Creating a Broadband Authority like the one advocated in the op-ed is one of the task force’s main recommendations. The op-ed acknowledges the investment will be “substantial” (though it does not lay out a dollar figure), but warns that the city’s infrastructure will decline if the technological improvements are not made.

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