An October 15 Easton Star Democrat article discusses a recent visit of Governor Martin O’Malley and other state and county officials to celebrate the recent completion of the One Maryland Broadband Network.
Since 2010, the state has spent about $115 million in grant funding to construct 1,300 miles of fiber optic cables to connect 1,006 government facilities and community “anchor institutions” — courthouses, 911 dispatch centers, police departments, hospitals and schools — all across Maryland. …The Internet is the new infrastructure which should be included in regular road, sewer and other infrastructure maintenance, O’Malley said, adding the One Maryland Broadband Network is the future of Maryland.
The article also discusses the immediate benefits of the network for Queen Anne’s County public schools.
While the network now connects government and anchor institutions, challenges remain in getting homes in rural areas of the state connected to high-speed internet. Communications companies are reluctant to commit to the costs of running high-speed cable to many dispersed homes and communities on the Eastern Shore, Western Maryland, and Southern Maryland. Connecting the so-called “last mile” to rural residential homes remains an important goal of many rural county economic development strategies.