Legislators discuss broadband access at annual breakfast

Published: Dec. 12, 2018 at 4:33 PM EST
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Broadband, Interstate 81 and education were some hot topics over breakfast Wednesday morning.

Members of the Greater Augusta Regional Chamber of Commerce discussed those topics with legislators at their annual breakfast.

Delegates Steve Landes and Dickie Bell talked about the importance of bringing broadband access to rural Virginia.

Bell says broadband is vital to help bring back lost jobs. Without broadband access, Bell says businesses often lose interest.

For Landes, he says broadband has become a necessity for education and business.

"Broadband is becoming just like having water and sewer or electric service, it's just as important at this point," Landes said.

Bell said there's been a focus on providing study options for students outside the classroom, but that requires broadband access.

"You know this would be a great opportunity for us to avoid snow days and make-up days if we had broadband access to everybody," Bell said.

Both delegates agreed public and private groups need to work together to bring broadband access to everyone. Landes says the state provided an additional $8 million for broadband access in the last budget.