U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin
Press Release

Baldwin, Blackburn Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Improve Internet Access in Rural America

"We need to strengthen our internet infrastructure to better serve Middle America and rural communities, and improve the online experience for people in all parts of our country."

By - Apr 12th, 2019 09:05 am

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) introduced the bipartisan Internet Exchange (IX) Act (S. 1166) to help improve internet access for consumers, especially those in rural areas.

“We need to strengthen our internet infrastructure to better serve Middle America and rural communities, and improve the online experience for people in all parts of our country,” said Senator Baldwin. “This bipartisan measure will help expand broadband access across our country. By investing in our internet infrastructure and adding more internet exchanges in Wisconsin and throughout the heartland, we can help more rural households and rural businesses gain better access to high-speed internet.”

“You can’t have a 21st century education, 21st century healthcare, or a 21st century business without access to 21st century internet,” said Senator Blackburn. “The bipartisan IX Act will make big strides in closing the digital divide in Tennessee by providing internet access to areas with the highest degree of need.”

Internet Exchanges (IXs) are physical locations where networks come together – they allow subscribers of different internet service providers to communicate with one another. IXs also provide opportunities for content delivery networks (CDNs) and others to cache content closer to end-users, thus reducing latency and increasing network efficiency to improve the online experience for consumers, especially in rural areas.

IX facilities provide opportunities for data centers and cloud computing to be collocated at IX sites, thus increasing efficiency and boosting local economies. Currently, IXs are concentrated in big cities and in the coastal states.

This legislation authorizes matching grants to be administered by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to help establish new IX facilities where none exist, or to help an existing one expand.

It also permits eligible recipients under the E-Rate program (for schools and libraries) and Telehealth program to use available funding to contract with a broadband provider to obtain a connection to an IX facility, or to pay for the costs of maintaining a point of presence at an IX facility.

Mentioned in This Press Release

Recent Press Releases by U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Urges CDC to Address Outbreak of Severe Lung Disease Connected to Vaping

Mystery illness has sickened hundreds of Americans, including more than 30 Wisconsinites

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin’s Go Pack Go Act Guarantees All Wisconsinites Can Watch Every Packers Game Broadcast

“Every Packers fan across our state should be able to watch every Packers game.”

Leave a Reply

You must be an Urban Milwaukee member to leave a comment. Membership, which includes a host of perks, including an ad-free website, tickets to marquee events like Summerfest, the Wisconsin State Fair and the Florentine Opera, a better photo browser and access to members-only, behind-the-scenes tours, starts at $9/month. Learn more.

Join now and cancel anytime.

If you are an existing member, sign-in to leave a comment.

Have questions? Need to report an error? Contact Us