Interventions Phase 2: Association of Municipalities Ontario (Intervenor 710)

Document Name: 2015-134.227211.2532389.Interventions Phase 2(1$@0501!).pdf

200 University Ave. Suite 801 www.amo.on.ca Tel 416. 971.9856 Toll Free in Ontario Toronto, ON, *** *** ******@***.com Fax 416. 971.6191 *-***-***-**** Via email: ****-******@***.com

February 3, 2016
****-Pierre ****
Chairman and Chief Executive ****

Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission 1 Promenade du Portage

Central Building
Gatineau, Quebec *** ***
**** Mr. ****:

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on such an important issue. Across Ontario access to reliable, speedy internet services is an essential component of education, business and industry as well as the social stability of communities.

As internet access is a fundamental service, it is difficult to answer how access to internet impacts participation in the digital economy as the scope is so great. Having internet access at a speed which is compatible with the majority of education facilities, government offices, medical facilities, emergency services and retail sites is indispensable.

This need will only grow over time. Further, it will be driven by government policy as initiatives such as closing regional offices, reducing greenhouse gasses, changes to funding formulae and maximizing opportunities to gather voices from across the country by using technology.

The CRTC should facilitate and enable access, not only where the providers of such services find it easy to serve. Last year, staff of the CRTC assured the Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) that we share the goal of making certain that rural populations have access to the internet and telecommunications tools required to be viable. AMO supports the concepts being brought forward by Eastern Ontario Wardens Caucus (EOWC)/Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) in their submissions to you.

The Western Ontario Wardens are also working on a similar strategy to address broadband gaps.

Further, it was requested that Industry Canada lay out a clear set of actions for providing access to these connectivity tools in a comprehensive and long term plan. **** wireless through fixed, mobile or satellite and wired access are needed to sustain all municipal governments. It was unclear if such a plan of actions exists. While market forces do come to bear, the government must lead and guide these forces to the benefit of rural Ontarians and not just allow the market to self-direct to places where the economies of scale make it easy to flourish.

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The CRTC web page reads…” Committed to ensuring that Canadians – as citizens, creators and consumers – have access to a world-class communication system”. A worthy goal which must include all regions be they rural, northern or urban.

Yours sincerely,
**** McNamara
AMO President

Interventions Phase 2: Association of Municipalities Ontario (Intervenor 710)

Document Name: 2015-134.227211.2532390.Interventions Phase 2(1$@0601!).html

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