Slow or no internet access is a major roadblock for economic development in many areas of Senate District 1. Silke will advocate building out high speed wired and wireless networks to all homes and businesses in SD1, which can be accomplished either in private-public partnerships or publicly owned infrastructure. Silke will work together with counties, cities and towns around the district on securing state government support for such projects, especially in our underserved and rural areas. It is vital that we ensure equal access to broadband, as well as the ability to upload and download content at high speeds and participate fully in e-commerce, education and digital medicine.

Silke believes that using smart regulation and planning is key to improving cost containment, protecting the environment and enhancing public safety. Without sensible and planned deployment, these last miles of access will not happen. A recent study for El Dorado County outlined a strategy of community investment in high speed connections for key anchor institutions. This network can then be leveraged for building out to neighborhoods to connect homes and businesses with fiber optics--a very promising strategy that could be widely employed.