Lead The Way on Broadband in Maine: Become A County Connector!

Posted on 12/26/21

“I don’t even have the option to get broadband where I live and I’ve been in touch with State Senators, my town manager, Comcast, and Spectrum,” said AARP volunteer Ginny S. “Everyone just tells me it’s not possible. I’m in a dark corner.”

Too many Mainers, especially those of us not living in Portland, Bangor and other cities, are routinely told that a broadband internet connection is just not possible. Or, it’ll cost tens of thousands to simply run a line to where we need it. A modern, fast, internet connection has become a requirement in today’s connected world. Sadly, Maine ranks 44th out of all US states in connectivity. If our students, businesses, and health services are going to thrive, that needs to change.  

It’s time to do something about it.

We’ve partnered with the Maine Broadband Coalition to begin building teams of local leaders as part of a County Connector program and finally establish a grassroots network to help build…the network!  

We have a huge opportunity in front of us with once-in-a-generation funding from the federal government, political agreement and motivation, and communities ready to roll up their sleeves and begin expanding access to the broadband infrastructure all Mainers deserve.

We’re looking for folks looking to be on the ground floor of the broadband revolution here in Maine. Here’s what it will look like:

County Connectors will coordinate efforts in towns in their county, working with other County Connectors to urge local elected officials and town leadership to prioritize broadband funding and development. Working with the Maine Broadband Coalition, County Connectors will be the facilitators of the future of Maine’s interconnected future. This includes:

  • Getting towns to sign on to the Maine Broadband Principles pledge.
  • Connecting local leaders with the resources they need to make crucial decisions around broadband policy and funding
  • Building a local coalition of support from local businesses, organizations and community leaders.
  • Plugging into existing broadband efforts
  • Educating friends, neighbors, and community about “broadband basics.”
  • Serve as a resource for other County Connectors facing similar community challenges.
  • Help guide broadband funding opportunities at the local level.
  • Make sure access to broadband is affordable for all community members.

Like any launch, there will be some bumps. We’re counting on Mainers to help guide this broadband effort to make sure each community achieves the best solution for them.

Join our County Connector group and start learning what you can do to help usher in Maine’s connected future.

Want to be part of a connected Maine future? Sign up here!

This story is provided by AARP Maine. Visit the AARP Maine page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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