Coalition pushes for broadband expansion in Illinois

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Coalition pushes for broadband expansion in Illinois

Citing broadband’s ability to spur economic growth and improve the quality of living among many communities, a diverse group of Illinois organizations and leaders have formed a coalition to promote making broadband available throughout the state.

“Broadband drives everything from our economy to educational opportunity, helping businesses connect to new markets and students connect to education anywhere in the world. Those opportunities should be available to every family and business in the state, no matter where they are located,” said Larry Ivory, co-chair of Internet Innovation Alliance Illinois.

Joining Ivory as co-chair is Ron Honse, Illinois Representative for the Communications Workers of America (CWA). Additionally, 982 grassroots members have signed the alliance’s petition in support of broadband expansion.

Members of the coalition will spend the coming months educating state leaders and others about the importance and value of mobile broadband. A recent IIA study demonstrates how broadband can save Illinois families thousands of dollars each year due to price comparison, access to deeper markets and the power of group-buying from websites like Groupon and LivingSocial.

The new Illinois coalition is dedicated to promoting policies that foster expanding broadband throughout the state. The alliance supports reforming the Universal Service Fund to include broadband and deploying a more efficient use of spectrum. The group has also thrown its support behind the proposed $39 billion merger of AT&T and T-Mobile, a move estimated to provide broadband access to an additional 55 million more Americans than are covered under pre-merger plans.

“Our common goal is ensuring everyone has access to high-speed broadband Internet,” said Ron Honse, co-chair of IIA Illinois.  “Until we meet that goal, businesses that want to innovate and expand and their communities will be at a disadvantage.”

Find out more about the IIA at www.internetinnovation.org.

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