Today Nate McMurray, Democrat running in the special election to fill the Congressional vacancy left when Republican Chris Collins went to jail in NY-27, urged Congress to invest $86 billion in broadband funding in the future COVID-19 response legislation. And he is calling on the Republican candidates to pledge their support or explain why rural New York doesn’t deserve the same access to broadband as Wall Street and New York City.
In 2018, 65 percent of District 27 did not have access to high-speed internet. While New York ranks 4th in connectivity in the country, America is still 30th in mobile speeds and 10th in internet speeds overall. Despite this clear need, McMurray’s opponent in the special election, billionaire Chris Jacobs, has made no progress during his time in the State Senate to bring broadband to working families in Western New York.
McMurray has pledged to expand federal funding to secure broadband for everyone in NY-27, not only to establish better internet but to foster technological prowess, business capabilities, and regional success.
“Our local internet is slow, even nonexistent in rural areas in NY27, and the pandemic has highlighted our need," McMurray said. "Our national internet on average is far below other industrialized countries. We rank about 10th overall and 30th in mobile speeds, near Romania and the Czech Republic. How is that acceptable?
"America is the place that invented the Internet. We were first. This is the home of Silicon Valley. We should not be 30th. It’s not about Netflix. It’s about better education, more business opportunities, and our future.
"We can’t continue to allow ourselves to be used by monopolistic cable companies that provide substandard service and deprive so many access all. I urge Congress to support expanded funding to ensure that Americans who need broadband service will remain connected during this public health crisis and recovery.”
“As your representative, I will never give up on building infrastructure, for broadband, for our future. May our light and intelligence, the talents of a million minds, flow once again from our region like our famous canal, like a sunburst — talents diversified find vent in myriad forms. Let’s embrace, and build, broadband. Now."