If, like me, you live in rural Mississippi Mills, you may not be aware that we are all disadvantaged when it comes to our property values.
The reason is lack of internet services. Don’t believe me? Just ask any real estate agent. One of the first questions that prospective buyers ask is about high-speed internet.
Or, ask anyone under 50 if they would buy a home without high-speed internet and the answer would be a resounding “no”. No modern-day family would purposefully disadvantage their children by denying them access to one of the greatest sources of information in history. That would be crazy.
I recently learned of a federal program to fund municipalities that want to upgrade their internet services for rural residents. I have read the application rules and it seems that applications that originate from a municipality are given priority treatment.
It is surprising that our local Mississippi Mills Council is not leading the charge on this. I wonder if they realize what a positive economic impact reasonable internet service would bring?
Other municipalities are not so slow off the mark. There are many small municipalities that take the initiative to secure funding. The Town of Mono, with a population of around 7,000, is just one example. Surely, we can be as visionary as the Town of Mono.
I am focusing on property values but that is just the start of the benefits. High speed means that we can keep more young people living and working in our community. It means better access to learning materials. For example, I use a service called Pluralsight.com. It provides fantastic learning tools to augment traditional learning. This great resource is unavailable to students that live in rural Mississippi Mills. What a disservice to our younger generation – our future.
If you share my view that Mississippi Mills is losing out, please call your Councillors and encourage them to take action. Our Council should be leading the effort for funding. If some councillors say that this is not a municipal issue, please point out that the CTI program is giving preferential treatment to applications from municipalities. It is a municipal matter. Council must get involved.