ROCKINGHAM COUNTY — The COVID-19 pandemic has cast a sharp spotlight on the issue of rural, broadband dead zones that have long handicapped residents of Rockingham County.
In a unique time when work, education and life have quickly shifted to the virtual world, universal access to reliable internet is more important than ever.
“COVID-19 has reemphasized the shortfalls we have, not just in our county, but throughout the state,” said Mark Richardson, chairman of the Rockingham County Board of Commissioners.
But a major boost may finally come to the rural county from recently announced grant awards to pay for broadband.
Over the next 20 days, Spectrum Southeast is expected to finalize contracts with the N.C. Department of Information Technology with plans to bring internet access to underserved areas of the county of about 91,000.
Work is expected to begin soon after the contracts are signed, county officials said, explaining they