Albas and Konanz reveal plan to prioritize rural broadband access
As Prime Minister, Andrew Scheer will require internet providers to ensure better access to high-speed internet
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October 6th, 2019
Faulder, BC– Today, South Okanagan-West Kootenay Conservative candidate Helena Konanz and Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola Conservative candidate Dan Albas, announced that a new Conservative government led by Andrew Scheer will make sure that rural Canadians have access to high-speed internet by setting aside a portion of all spectrum auctions to meet the needs of rural Canada.
“Canadians – no matter where they live – should have access to high-speed internet,” said Konanz. Making sure that public resources like wireless spectrum are prioritized for rural Canadians will help achieve that.”
“What’s more, a new Conservative government will require internet data providers to connect the maximum number of Canadians to high-speed internet by redirecting existing rural broadband funding towards strategic priorities, priorities like a high-capacity backbone.” said Albas
A new Conservative government will redefine the licence areas for spectrum auctions to ensure that rural Canadians are not unfairly lumped in with urban centres in spectrum auctions. The current spectrum area called “Kelowna” goes from north of Vernon all the way to Osoyoos. These huge areas require small companies who serve rural customers to compete for spectrum against major corporations who want to primarily offer service in the cities.
The Auditor General of Canada found that the Liberals had no plan for rural broadband connectivity, leading to badly designed programs that have cost taxpayers millions with no discernible improvement in service. Justin Trudeau is now trying to solve this by throwing taxpayer dollars at the problem. A new Conservative government will take a smarter approach that allows the private sector to do its work, while focusing government investment on areas that are less commercially attractive. Once again, we will right their wrong.
Andrew Scheer, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives: “Access to broadband and the internet is not a luxury, it’s a necessity. The government cannot allow there to be a distinct divide between rural and urban Canada. I have a plan for all Canadians to get ahead.”
In September 2019, Andrew Scheer announced the measures he would take to help rural communities across the country to ensure their prosperity:
- Ensure that all regions receive their fair share of infrastructure funding with a budget specifically for them.
- Appoint a Minister of Rural Affairs.
- Ensure that all Cabinet decisions have a rural perspective. Ensure that government programs consider the life conditions and unique experiences of Canadians in rural regions.
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