Although the budget included broadband expansion, Haliburton’s MP wants to see action now.

As part of the conversation about the recently announced budget, Jamie Schmale was emphatic about the need for better internet coverage all over Ontario and more specifically in Haliburton County.

Schmale said in an interview with MyHaliburtonNow.com the 2019 budget has money allocated for broadband expansion, which he said is “interesting” because the Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) had created a plan for expanding coverage in the area over two years ago.

“I find it very interesting that the government has chosen to hold onto that until an election,” says Schmale

Trying to create a sense of urgency, Schmale explained that if the government is going to build infrastructure for better broadband in 2020, the feds need to announce a plan on how they expect to do that and explain how the funding for broadband is going to be spread.

“If they don’t, there is a very real risk they’re are going to miss the next construction season. Which means people in Haliburton County are going to have to continue to wait for high-speed internet to start appearing to fill these gaps.”

Schmale said “I think the people of Haliburton County have been really patient so far, and I think the need for action was yesterday.

Some Haliburton County residents had expressed during the municipal election campaign, the lack of coverage is an absolute concern. Some said that they could not operate their business to its full potential because they can’t get enough connectivity to use debit and credit.

Suzanne Partridge, the former county warden, expressed that she literally could not get internet in her home so any business she needed to conduct had to be done elsewhere.

The impassioned Schmale tells MyHaliburtonNow that he will “fight tooth and nail” to get proper coverage for the people of Haliburton County.

“If we miss another construction season, that is totally unacceptable.”