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Broadband access has become more important than ever with people working and learning from home

What dos this mean for rural communities?
What dos this mean for rural communities?(Connor Matteson)
Published: Oct. 18, 2020 at 4:17 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - Broadband access has become more important than ever with people working and learning from home.

We talked with Senator Mike Rounds and Democratic challenger Dan Ahlers about the issues around broadband access.

Ahlers says there are already so many great programs out there to hurry along the process of providing internet.

He says this could be part of what we do in the next stimulus, to provide additional funding to help build the infrastructure.

He says in the long run, broadband access will help our economy by helping schools, small business owners, and telehealth at the hospitals and clinics.

“There’s a lot of benefits and this is a great area where you could spend a little extra money and it’d be an investment, a long-term investment for all of South Dakota," says Ahlers.

Rounds says broadband access is an ongoing project in South Dakota and there is more work to do.

He says for educational purposes the government is recognizing how critical it is for people in rural areas to be able to be equal, if not better, than the access in urban areas.

Rounds also says that broadband access is important for hospitals and businesses.

“It’s very important and our rural communities would fall behind in terms of capable of handling business activities if we do not have it. It’s not an option anymore, it’s absolutely necessary in rural areas," says Rounds.

Election day is November 3rd and both candidates encourage everyone to cast their vote.

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