Iowa’s Governor Chet Culver and the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) released a new report “Iowa Broadband: Current Market Analysis & Initial Recommendations for Acceleration of Iowa’s Broadband Market”. The report offers the state’s first look at key broadband market data to be used to form a clear strategic plan for broadband expansion in the state.
The IUB conducted the initial assessment of the state’s broadband landscape based on data collected from the Connect Iowa mapping and planning initiative. Connect Iowa was funded with a $2.2 million award by NTIA to launch the initiative in the state and to carry out their work over a five year period.
The report is being used to support the work of the Iowa Broadband Deployment Governance Board (IBDGB) created in 2009 to develop a comprehensive plan to promote sustainable deployment and adoption of high speed broadband access in the state. The IBDGB expects to complete the plan in 2011.
“Broadband service is now available to about 95 percent of Iowa households, yet only 66 percent of those households are subscribing to the service,” Culver said. While 95 percent of Iowans have access to broadband, the report also highlights that fewer Iowans have access to broadband at the higher speeds that will be necessary in order to compete in tomorrow’s economy.
The IBDGB will use the data to engage stakeholders like elected officials, civic leaders, educators, economic developers, and private entrepreneurs to help understand the state’s broadband challenges.
Go to www.connectiowa.org/_documents/ConnectIowaBroadbandAnalysis082010FINAL.pdf to download the report. Go to the Connect Iowa website www.connectiowa.org to find broadband providers and check their current internet speeds.