“As I listened to the Governor’s second installment of his “State of the State” address, I reflected on my first Economic Development Committee as Chair, held this morning, and the incredible amount of work there is to be done, and the opportunities that lay before us to improve the lives of our families.
I believe that one of the keys to our successful economic future is in high-speed transmission of ideas and data. However, for this to happen, we will need to provide access to reliable and affordable internet service to ALL. This is an issue of equity and fairness that must be addressed.
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of our children are learning remotely, many of our employees are working from home, and our families are using telemedicine to connect with doctors and mental health professionals. These services are possible because of high-speed internet connections. At the same time, we have also seen the sharp digital divide in our communities among those with quality access and those without. The impact of this digital divide is a learning gap among our children and has led to unemployment and business closures for those who do not have access to or cannot afford internet service. We must work to close this sharp divide being felt across our community and state.
We must fight for equity and close this digital divide. I am committed to put forth and invest in policies that will allow ALL the families of New York to access high speed internet connections so they may learn, earn and grow our state.”