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Recent posts by Johnathan Hladik

Now is the time for the Legislature to step up on broadband

An overreliance on faulty data may be leaving thousands of rural Nebraska households out of the digital age. Twice per year, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) collects broadband access data through Form 477 from internet service providers. This data has a host of problems and can severely overestimate broadband access.

Many Nebraskans are being left behind because of this inaccurate information. Meanwhile, state and local governments are using this information as a primary source to distribute their limited resources—something it was never intended to be used as.

Are property taxes on the ballot?

Up and down the campaign trail and all across Nebraska, candidates are quick to tell you that property tax is their number one priority. It’s true for incumbents and newcomers alike. Nearly every rural or statewide contender is ensuring voters that property tax is the primary focus.

These candidates show empathy when saying times are tough. They are quick to display confidence when telling us they “know how to fix it.” Some use flashy graphs, glossy charts, and selective statistics to show they are serious.

Lesser-known broadband policy leaves rural areas out 

Connectivity is the defining aspect of our 21st century economy. Access to broadband internet offers the best in education, health care, and economic development. Unfortunately for many, the best isn’t available.

More than 24 million Americans lack broadband access. This includes 31 percent of households in rural areas, but only 2 percent in urban. 19 million of 25 million households without broadband are in rural areas.

Old fashioned data collection guarantees this will continue.

Local View: Broadband policy hurts rural Nebraska

Connectivity is the defining aspect of our 21st-century economy. Access to broadband internet offers the best in education, health care and economic development. Whether we’re learning a new language, taking care of a loved one or managing a farm, Nebraskans have a clear demand for connectivity

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