The Palmetto Broadband Coalition, a consortium of well-established, locally owned broadband providers, announced its launch on January 30. This alliance is the most recent collaboration among providers, some with over 120 years of history, who consistently unite to enhance connectivity and better serve their customers as technology advances.
The founding members of the Palmetto Broadband Coalition are Comporium of Rock Hill, Farmers Telephone Cooperative (FTC) of Kingstree, Home Telecom of Moncks Corner, Horry Telephone Cooperative (HTC) of Conway, Palmetto Rural Telephone Cooperative (PRTC) of Walterboro, Piedmont Rural Telephone Cooperative (PRTC) of Laurens, Sandhill Telephone Cooperative of Jefferson, TruVista of Chester and West Carolina Rural Telephone Cooperative (WCTEL) of Abbeville. Each brings a wealth of experience and a strong commitment to serving the people of South Carolina.
“Time and time again South Carolina’s local telecommunications and broadband providers have stepped up to the plate to serve our state,” said Speaker of the House Murrell Smith. “With the formation of the Palmetto Broadband Coalition, these homegrown companies are yet again putting their local communities first as we move forward in an ever more connected future.”
Each provider traces its roots to the early days of the telecommunications industry when the rural areas of South Carolina did not offer a viable market for the large telephone companies to establish operations and serve residents. Recognizing the growing need to connect homes, schools, businesses, and healthcare providers, independent telephone companies stepped up.
Fast forward to the 1980s when the same group of companies refused to let advancements in information technology and connectivity pass by South Carolina. They again came together and pooled their resources to best serve the needs of the state. The resulting product was a provider of fiber optic connectivity that traversed thousands of miles across South Carolina.
It is in this same vein that the Palmetto Broadband Coalition was founded. With South Carolina investing significant resources to ensure every home and business has access to high quality, affordable broadband, it is pivotal that the longtime experts and providers in connectivity that make up the Palmetto Broadband Coalition come together again in service to the people of the state, regardless of their location.
"Access to high-speed broadband is no longer a luxury; it's a necessity for education, healthcare, economic development and quality of life," said Will Helmly, President & CEO of Home Telecom and Chair of the Palmetto Broadband Coalition. "Our coalition is dedicated to bridging the digital divide and ensuring that every corner of South Carolina is connected to the opportunities of the digital age."
Key goals and initiatives of the Palmetto Broadband Coalition include:
Expanding Broadband Access: The coalition will work tirelessly to expand high-speed broadband access to underserved and unserved areas in South Carolina, ensuring that no community is left behind.
Advocating for Policy: The coalition will engage with policymakers at all levels to advocate for policies that encourage investment and innovation in the state's broadband infrastructure.
Fostering Innovation: Through partnerships and collaboration, the coalition will support innovative solutions that leverage broadband technology to address local challenges and drive economic growth.
To stay updated on the Palmetto Broadband Coalition's activities and initiatives, please visit our website at PalmettoBroadbandCoalition.com.
About the Palmetto Broadband Coalition:
The Palmetto Broadband Coalition is a collective effort of leading telecommunications and broadband providers in South Carolina. The Coalition is committed to shaping the state's broadband future, while providing high quality, reliable broadband access, customer service, and community investment to South Carolina customers and communities so that they can be connected now and into the future.
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