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Older Texans Can Give Input on High-Speed Internet Needs Before State Broadband Plan Takes Shape

Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar is hosting a listening tour to hear what Texans have to say about internet connections in their areas. The responses his office receives will help to shape a crucial Broadband Development Plan – the outcome of which may have high stakes for older Texans who need high-speed internet for their day-to-day living.

The tour is organized by the newly formed Texas Broadband Development Office and will visit 12 communities, with opportunities for people to speak in person. Those who want to attend can register at the listening tour page.

The Broadband Development Office awards financial incentives to internet service providers, helping the providers to expand services in areas that are struggling to have internet service.

Grandson and grandparents taking selfie with digital tablet

For older Texans, particularly in rural areas, high-speed internet is vital to accessing telehealth services, getting information, working from home and preventing isolation. During the recent pandemic, millions of Texas residents have started to use telehealth services to get medical assistance virtually. Texans can also benefit from having fast, high-speed internet for education and agriculture purposes, and it serves to connect rural users.

Texans can also be part of the Broadband Development Plan by filling out an online survey to share with the office their internet experience. Information from the survey will help the Comptroller’s Office create Texas’ first broadband plan. The survey will be available until May 5, with the plan being set to be released on June 15.

The Texas Broadband Listening Tour will begin March 1 and ends April 28. It will include stops in Prairie View, Victoria, Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Amarillo, Beaumont, Waco, Tyler, Abilene, El Paso, Edinburg, and San Angelo.

Learn more information about the tour and the Texas Broadband Development Office on the Comptroller’s website.

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