Broadband bill passes General Assembly
Broadband could soon reach more Virginians – thanks to a bill that now waits for the governor’s signature.
The legislation would allow fiber optic cables to cross operating rail lines.
Casey Logan is the CEO of Prince George Electric Cooperative – and also chairs an association of broadband providers in Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. He said the decision will allow greater broadband service in rural, underserved communities.
“So this legislation is really going to help bridge the digital divide that's existing in Virginia,” said Logan. “At the end of the day, whoever wants to have access to the Internet will be able to get it.”
Logan also said that thanks to fiber-optic technology, broadband access in rural Virginia is expanding rapidly. He pointed to one example he encountered.
“The most extreme case that we had was in Surry County. Surry County was 99% underserved,” said Logan.
“Basically, what that means is the county complex in downtown Surry was the only facility in the entire county that had any kind of broadband availability.”
Logan and Prince George Electric subsidiary Ruralband used funds from the Virginia Telecom Initiative to build infrastructure for the county. Surry County was one of the first counties in the state to achieve universal broadband access.