Governor attaches a tax credit to broadband networking

Governor attaches a tax credit to broadband networking

BY TRUDY WALSH | GCN STAFF

Gov. Dirk Kempthorne recently unveiled a project that will provide rural communities in southern and eastern Idaho with access to broadband technology.

A consortium of 12 Idaho telecommunications companies called Syringa Networks LLC will make a $40 million investment in broadband services by December next year. Syringa plans to complete half of the network by the end of the year.

The broadband network will move high-speed voice, video and data over a single connection.

It will give students in small communities such as Stanley (1990 population, 444) access to the same information as students in San Francisco, San Diego or Singapore, Kempthorne said. 'Broadband will make that happen.'

The broadband project is a cornerstone of Kempthorne's Rural Initiative, a program that the Legislature approved this year. The initiative includes a 3 percent investment tax credit for companies investing in broadband technology in Idaho.

Job networking

Kempthorne said his Rural Initiative will help create jobs and make Idaho a national leader. When he began discussing the importance of broadband technology with his rural task force last year, the Syringa network was exactly the kind of innovation he had in mind, Kempthorne said.

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