09:02 AM

U.S. Sen. Reverend Warnock, FCC Chairwoman Rosenworcel Visit Jackson EMC

Sen. Raphael Warnock and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel visited Jackson EMC on Friday for a roundtable discussion on opportunities and challenges related to broadband and to hear from providers and their partners about their experiences in expanding high-speed internet service for Georgians.

The roundtable was held at Jackson EMC and included local and statewide elected officials, communications providers, leaders from a number of EMCs across the state, and several area universities and colleges.

“I’ve traveled through Georgia a lot, and one challenge I hear about time and time again, especially in rural communities, is that it’s too hard for people to get online,” said Senator Reverend Warnock. “Broadband is a utility just like electricity or water, and in 2021, everyone needs reliable access to the internet for their jobs, their companies and to live their lives. I was so glad to be with FCC Chair Rosenworcel today to tour and visit with the leaders at Jackson EMC, and discuss how local and federal partners can keep working together to advance our shared goal of connecting Georgians to all the economic and educational opportunities that broadband has to offer.”

“Traveling across Georgia, it is clear we need to get 100% of Americans online, no matter who they are or where they live. Broadband access unlocks job and economic opportunities, keeps students connected to their schoolwork, and offers new ways to keep in touch with our healthcare providers, and much more,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “Hearing and learning directly from the skilled individuals building out our networks and the communities affected by a lack of infrastructure are lessons I will carry with me as we move forward with the FCC’s work to ensure everyone gets a fair shot at 21st century success.”

“We appreciate Senator Warnock and Chairwoman Rosenworcel’s efforts and the opportunity to discuss broadband today. Broadband connectivity is a vital issue, particularly for rural communities in Georgia,” said Chip Jakins, President/CEO of Jackson EMC. “EMCs across the state are expanding broadband in their communities using several different approaches,” he said. “For Jackson EMC, our best solution is partnering with broadband providers to bring high-speed internet service to unserved areas.”

Jackson Electric Membership Corporation, the largest electric cooperative in Georgia and one of the largest in the nation, is headquartered 50 miles northeast of Atlanta in Jefferson, Ga. The cooperative serves more than 244,000 meters on 14,000 miles of energized wire. For more information, visit jacksonemc.com.