New rural development minister to tackle broadband availability

Originally published by The Wire Report
Author: Ahmad Hathout

After the auditor general blasted the government for not having a clear plan to deal with the deployment of rural broadband, the Liberal government on Monday created a ministry to deal with the matter.

Rookie Liberal MP Bernadette Jordan, who comes from a large rural riding of South Shore — St. Margarets, was sworn in at Rideau Hall on Monday morning as minister for the newly created ministry of rural economic development, which will be administered by Infrastructure Canada. She is the first woman representing a riding in Nova Scotia to hold a cabinet position.

The post will mean that Jordan’s office will “take action to bring high-speed internet to more rural households and businesses, and work with municipalities, provinces, territories, and indigenous partners to meet the unique and diverse infrastructure needs of rural communities,” a release from the prime minister’s office (PMO) said.

Addressing media questions, she noted, according to a transcript, that she’s “really looking forward” to advancing the issues of a “lack of strong broadband and internet” specifically. “We’ve seen challenges with rural broadband and cellphone coverage across the country,” she added.

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