Barnstable County Doubles Down on Need for Broadband

HYANNIS – Barnstable County Commissioners have seconded the need recently raised by the Assembly of Delegates for state assistance in providing last-mile broadband internet connection to the Cape. 

At the most recent meeting of the board, Commissioner Ronald Bergstrom said with remote work and virtual meetings here to stay, the Cape’s business and local government are also starting to feel the effects of inconsistent internet. 

“We have all had frustration with the lack of high-speed internet here on the Cape, especially on the Outer Cape. More and more people are relying on it. I know we have employees that work remotely several days a week, so this is a critical issue for the economy of the Cape,” said Bergstrom. 

The original resolution was written by Delegate Dan Gessen, and requests Gov. Maura Healey take steps to directly address broadband access, especially given the seasonal nature of Cape Cod frequently overtaxing existing infrastructure with the dramatic increase in population every summer.

“What the delegates are aware of, and I think what increasingly a lot of people working on this issue are aware of, is that in the past several years there’s been a real focus on Western Massachusetts,” said Forest.

“Now there’s an emphasis on looking at the rest of the state.”

Local efforts like the nonprofit OpenCape have looked to expand fiber-optic internet Cape-wide, but the final mile from centralized infrastructure to individual homes has been the most challenging and expensive part of the process.

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native from Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the News Center in 2019.
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