Morris County, TX (July 28, 2020) – The Morris County Collaborative Broadband Committee, in partnership with Connected Nation Texas (CN Texas), today launched a new effort to improve broadband (high-speed internet) access across the county.
“We are taking action to find ways to expand internet access to more individuals, families, community organizations, and businesses in Morris County,” said Doug Reeder, Morris County Judge. “By working with Connected Nation Texas, we are able to leverage the nonprofit’s experience in developing Technology Action Plans that are specific to a community’s unique landscape. But we need the public’s help to ensure that we have reliable and complete data on who has access to high-speed internet and who doesn’t, as well as potential obstacles and opportunities for expanding broadband services to every corner of the county.”
CN Texas, through its Connected Community Engagement Program, will use data collected from local residents, businesses, government institutions, and others over the next three months to develop the Technology Action Plan. To take the survey, head to this link: https://www.myconnectedcommunity.org/morris-county/
“Ensuring that our residents, businesses, and community organizations have the broadband access they need is critical, especially in light of what has happened during the pandemic,” saidBeverly Austin, Economic Development Chairperson, Morris County Collaborative. “Our children were told they had to learn from home. Our businesses had to find new ways to service their customers. Our residents had to find ways to work from home. Those are just a few examples, but imagine how much more difficult this time was if you did not have access to the internet. How would your child learn? How would your business go on? How would you keep your job? We must find solutions for connecting as many people as possible to broadband.”
Morris County is the ninth community selected as part of a statewide effort funded by the Texas Rural Funders. In total, 23 communities will be fully funded to take part in the Connectedprogram.
The community engagement program collects data from local stakeholders and works directly with providers to identify opportunities and challenges for expanding access to broadband, ultimately developing a county-specific Technology Action Plan. The Connected program has developed more than 350 of these plans across the United States.
“Earlier this year, just a month before the pandemic, we launched updated coverage maps that showed where broadband access was strong and where it was lacking across the state,” said Jennifer Harris, State Program Director, CN Texas. “We have asked the public to review these maps and let us know where we need to make improvements and adjustments so we can provide a better picture of the need and the opportunity for internet expansion across Texas—including in Morris County.”
You can find your county map and review its updated information by heading to https://connectednation.hatfield.marketing/texas/mapping-analysis/and provide feedback at https://connectednation.hatfield.marketing/texas/feedback. You can also find an interactive map at https://connectednation.hatfield.marketing/texas/interactivemap.
Head here for a printable fact sheet on the Morris County Collaborative Broadband Committee’s work: https://connectednation.hatfield.marketing/texas/wp-content/uploads/sites/19/2020/07/Morris-County-Broadband-Fact-Sheet-draft.pdf
To learn more about CN Texas, email Jennifer Harris email@example.com visit the CN Texas website at www.connectednation.hatfield.marketing/texas. To learn more about the Connected Program, head to https://connectednation.hatfield.marketing/connect-my-community/.
Contact: Jessica Denson, Director, Communications
About Connected Nation Texas: CN Texas is a local division of the national nonprofit Connected Nation. Our mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access to and increase the adoption and use of broadband (high-speed internet) and its related technologies for all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.
Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers, and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: connectednation.hatfield.marketingand follow Connected Nation on Facebookand Twitter.
About the Texas Rural Funders:The mission of the Texas Rural Funders (TRF) is to partner with rural Texans to achieve their vision of prosperity and wellbeing. The group’s strategies recognize and are informed by rural expertise and assets. The TRFC leverages local, philanthropic, state and federal resources to collaborate on projects, support local capacity and leadership, share research, convene stakeholders and engage in advocacy. More information can be found on the TRF webpage at: https://www.edtx.org/get-involved/texas-rural-funders-collaborative.
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