01/28/2020- Rural UP communities could see a boost in their broadband service under a pair of proposals backed by the Representative for Michigan’s 108th District. Representative Beau LaFave of Iron Mountain voted in favor of House Bills 4266 and 5266 last week, which would reduce the number barriers electric cooperatives face in building and expanding broadband networks on existing infrastructure and within existing easements. He says, as it stands now, the requirements to co-locate equipment on existing infrastructure- and the costs and permissions associated- are holding back these companies who are otherwise poised to bring better internet access to the UP.
LaFave says people across Michigan including those in the UP no longer just want, but need advanced technology to prosper in today’s world and a lack of reliable service impacts everyone from students to workforce professionals.
Both bills dealing with broadband expansion are now headed to the State Senate for consideration there.