U.S. Sen. Shaheen sees broadband as economic elixir

U.S. Sen. Shaheen sees broadband as economic elixir

At NH Broadband Conference, praise for broadband's role in economy, education.

Image: Network New Hampshire Now

Although New Hampshire has made significant inroads in broadband Internet availability, U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H) says there’s still work to be done.

The former governor of New Hampshire, in remarks prepared for delivery at the May 2014 New Hampshire Broadband Conference, said high-speed Internet access, along with cellular communications, is “essential to long-term economic development and job growth in New Hampshire.”

“Harnessing this technology and spreading it throughout our state will enhance educational opportunities in our schools, attract companies to locate to New Hampshire, provide our first responders with timely information they need to protect and serve, improve the delivery and reduce the costs of health care, and give small businesses a valuable tool to succeed,” Shaheen said.

Download Sen. Shaheen's full remarks

New Hampshire is a national leader in broadband, ranking fourth among U.S. states and the District of Columbia with an average peak broadband connection speed of 37.1 megabits per second, according to this analysis of data collected by the Internet content delivery provider Akamai.

New Hampshire also ranks high in broadband availability, with an estimated 96% of residents able to attain broadband connections as of September 2013, according to the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development. 

That rate is likely to climb even higher as the impact of New Hampshire’s federally funded fiber optic data network project, known as Network New Hampshire Now, widens.