Mayors and Elected Officials from Over 60 Cities and Counties Send Letter to President and Congress on Importance of Broadband Infrastructure

Members of Next Century Cities Call for Congress to Include Broadband Investment in Potential Infrastructure Legislation on Day of Senate Infrastructure Hearing

 

Washington, DC (March 1, 2017) — Today, over 60 mayors and other elected community leaders sent a letter to President Trump, Senate Majority Leader McConnell, and House Speaker Ryan on the importance of including broadband in any plan to improve the country’s infrastructure. The letter was sent on the same day the United States Senate held a hearing on “Improving Access the Infrastructure,” focusing on transportation and information networks.

The 65 signatories, who together represent nearly 16 million Americans, believe that broadband internet access is necessary infrastructure and a key to prosperity for their communities. The mayors and other municipal elected officials are members of Next Century Cities, a bipartisan organization of mayors and city leaders focused on ensuring fast, affordable, and reliable internet access for all Americans. Signers included the mayors and high-level elected officials from San Antonio, Chattanooga, Kansas City, San Francisco, Seattle, and other communities from across the nation. See the full letter here.

“As mayors and municipal officials, we have each championed access for our residents to high-quality broadband in ways that are right for our communities,” the letter stated. “We are eager to have the federal government take steps in an infrastructure package that will truly improve internet access for millions of Americans, and do so in ways that recognize the importance of local leaders in making these lofty plans a reality in our towns and cities across America.”

The letter recommends three key broadband priorities for any federal infrastructure plan: access, affordability, and local solutions for connectivity. It also emphasizes that the internet is nonpartisan, and that federal leaders should work together across party lines to promote the deployment of next-generation broadband.

“Today’s letter, signed by 65 mayors and communities leaders from across the country, shows significant support for the inclusion of real investments in next-generation broadband in any infrastructure bill,” said Deb Socia, Executive Director of Next Century Cities. “This letter, signed by cities large and small, serves as a reminder to state and federal lawmakers that there is widespread, bipartisan support for the deployment of high-speed, reliable internet access.”

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Next Century Cities is a non-profit membership organization of 164 communities, founded to support communities and their elected leaders, including mayors and other officials, as they seek to ensure that all have access to fast, affordable, and reliable internet access. Next Century Cities celebrates broadband successes in communities, demonstrates their value, and helps other cities to realize the full power of truly high-speed, affordable, and accessible broadband. For more information, visit www.nextcenturycities.org.