Excerpt from a letter sent by the Rural and Agriculture Council of America (RACA) and four other organizations to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler:
The undersigned organizations represent a cross-section of rural Americans. Our members respectfully request you reconsider your proposed rule for regulation of the business data services market.
It is well known that over the past several years there have been billions of dollars invested in networks of fiber infrastructure that have allowed business, small and large, rural and urban, to connect to the internet at high speeds, thus increasing productivity and sales. These private-public partnerships are true success stories. Unfortunately, much of rural America remains caught in the digital divide, as rural areas remain the last regions to receive widespread broadband, lagging far behind the urban cores.
We are concerned that this proposal would discourage needed investment in the broadband marketplace. If this proposal moves forward, our understanding is it could force cuts in the millions of dollars in future investment. Investment that is crucial to rural communities, because farmers, ranchers, rural businesses and major companies alike depend on quality high-speed internet access.