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ICYMI: Rep. Ron Kind, National Rural Broadband Task Force Introduce Accessible, Affordable Internet for All Act

March 22, 2021
Press Release

La Crosse, WI – Earlier this month, Rep. Ron Kind joined his colleagues on the Rural Broadband Task Force in introducing the Accessible, Affordable Internet for All Act. This legislation would authorize over $94 billion to ensure rural and underserved communities have access to affordable high-speed internet.   

"As a member of the National Rural Broadband Task Force, expanding access to broadband is one of my highest priorities. The internet is a necessity and has fundamentally changed the way we learn, communicate, access information, and conduct business, particularly throughout the COVID-19 crisis," said Rep. Ron Kind. "Unfortunately, far too many communities throughout Wisconsin have limited access to high-speed internet. That's why I am proud to join my colleagues in introducing the Accessible, Affordable, Internet for All Act to help close the rural-digital divide and ensure no Wisconsinite gets left behind."   

“Access to broadband today will have the same dramatic impact on rural communities as the rural electrification efforts in the last century,” said Majority Whip James E. Clyburn. “When I formed The Rural Broadband Task Force, our mission was to address the digital divide. The disparate effects of that divide have been amplified during the COVID-19 pandemic and exposed the urgency of ensuring universal access to high-speed internet. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the House and Senate to enact the Accessible, Affordable Internet for All Act.”   

Wisconsin ranks 36th of America’s most connected states, with 1/5 of the state’s population considered “underserved” or with limited access to high-speed internet. Over 899,000 people in Wisconsin have access to only one internet provider, with nearly 200,000 people living in communities without any wired internet providers.   

Rep. Kind has been a member of the House Rural Broadband Task Force since it was created in 2019, and has continuously supported legislation to expand broadband access for all Wisconsinites.  

Read the bill here.