ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

Broadband and economic-development information technology (IT) can transform business and industry opportunities in New Mexico, especially by increasing access to broadband technologies and infrastructure. Often, populations living in rural New Mexico do not have consistent access to resources and information. Reliable and readily available broadband services open New Mexico to global markets and healthy competition.

Economic Development and Revitalization

  • Promote electronic commerce (e-commerce)
  • Promote job creation and new industries in New Mexico
  • Provide access to markets: local, regional, national, and worldwide

Economic Development Issues

  • Reaching businesses, communities, and workers
    • Broadband tools and training for small businesses and their employees
    • Technology-based instruction for vocational training
  • Staying competitive in the global economy
    • Modern communications infrastructure
    • New firms, investments, and jobs
    • Telework and telecommuting
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New Mexico Broadband Working Group

The New Mexico Broadband Working Group is developing components for the Statewide Broadband Strategic Plan that focus on Economic Development, Education, and Health sectors. This group engages business and industry owners and employees, community representatives, broadband providers, and policy officials to help shape and improve economic-development technologies in New Mexico. Working Group objectives for all the sectors are multi-pronged:

  • Broadband availability and adoption
  • Gaps in broadband services
  • Existing facilities and services
  • Key applications and potential funding sources to improve or enhance community broadband access and use
  • Digital Literacy Resource development
  • Tribal and Municipal broadband planning and implementation guidance
  • Policy changes that can improve access and use
  • Governance to promote broadband adoption, integration, and collaboration

Economic Development Goals

The New Mexico Broadband Working Group Economic Development sector members have identified five major goals for the strategic plan.

  • Strengthen rural economies.
  • Support facilities management.
  • Support government reform for land use requirements and procedures.
  • Enhance economic development to rural areas and eliminate redundancies.
  • Create economic win-win solutions for public and private benefit.

Toward these goals, the Economic Development sector members are developing a database for infrastructure, services, and applications. Data compilation begins with a survey to describe technology availability and use in the state's businesses and industries. Questions cover Internet access, impacts of broadband limitations on opportunities, anticipated broadband needs and barriers, community-recruitment targets for business and industry and their needs, education and technical assistance needs, etc. This survey also characterizes community potentials for using technologies and increasing support and identifies challenges and barriers to improved broadband services.

In a high-speed world, many communities in New Mexico risk finding themselves behind the curve. Residents, businesses, and industries all can benefit from enhanced broadband availability, higher speeds, and widespread adoption. The NM Broadband Working Group will monitor state, regional, national, and federal programs for Web-based economic-development opportunities, allowing the broadband program and providers to offer resources and recommendations to improve our Internet access to community, business, and industry technologies and services and to global markets.

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