This week I voted in Parliament for the Digital Economy Bill, which will introduce a new Universal Service Obligation for fast broadband. Currently, 90% of households and businesses have access to fast broadband, and a further 5% will have access by the end of 2017. For the final 5%, the USO will give them the legal right to request a fast connection.
This is excellent news for people in the constituency who live in rural areas unconnected to the fast broadband network. Broadband provision will be put on an equal footing with other essential services like telephones and electricity.
All new build homes are required to have fibre connections for superfast broadband since the very welcome planning regulations published in April 2016. I am writing to Maidstone and Swale Borough Councils to make sure that their Local Plans include broadband provision. I’m excited to receive their replies which I hope will show their commitment to making Kent a superfast tech county.