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AARP AARP States Maine

High-Speed Internet is a Must for Mainers

High-Speed Internet is a Must for Mainers

On July 14, 2020, 75% of Maine voters took advantage of the opportunity to vote YES on question #1, a ballot referendum providing $15,000,000 to fund high-speed internet expansion to underserved and unserved areas. The passage of this measure will particularly impact rural areas of Maine that currently lack the infrastructure for high-speed internet. We hope you agree that Maine is in dire need of high-speed internet for residents of all ages no matter where they live!

The referendum question #1 on the ballot stated, “Do you favor a $15,000,000 bond issue to invest in high-speed internet infrastructure for unserved and underserved areas, to be used to match up to $30,000,000 in federal, private, local or other funds?”

During this challenging time of the Covid-19 pandemic, having access to high-speed internet is more important than ever. Schools have moved online, social gatherings are being held over the Internet, and tele-medicine is the primary way that people are meeting with their doctors. Without access to reliable, high-speed internet these things would not be possible, even at a time when they are critically important to the health and well-being of Mainers.

Some background: Why Does Access to High-speed Internet Matter?

· High-speed, reliable internet is essential for any community. Maine businesses, schools, hospitals, clinics, entrepreneurs, farmers, modern mills, factories, co-working spaces, restaurants, caregivers or home offices require a 21st Century internet connection in order to function in today’s economy.

· An estimated 85,000 households in Maine lack the ability to connect to high-speed, reliable internet.

· A good internet connection can decrease loneliness and depression, increase opportunities for furthering education, and allow services such as free captioned telephone services for the hard of hearing and some life alert programs.

THANK YOU, Maine, for voting YES ON 1

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