OFFICIAL PUBLIC STATEMENT
On March 15th, 2019, our provincial government announced it has awarded two national telecommunication giants (Bell and Xplornet) close to 40 million dollars of taxpayers’ money while excluding all local Internet Service Providers (ISP’s). These grants have been awarded with the intention to fix the rural internet problem on Prince Edward Island (PEI).
How does this affect me? Why should I care?
Previously, Bell and Xplornet have been given more than enough of taxpayers’ money and/or infrastructure to establish themselves on PEI yet we still have approximately 30,000 underserved households.
This is a significant missed opportunity to bring these revenues back home to the local economy.
History has proven that granting industry “behemoths” tens of millions of dollars torpedos small businesses, effectively TRAMPLING THEIR EFFORTS TO COMPETE AND GROW. This represses entrepreneurial innovation and is disastrous for competition ensuring there is a monopoly in the marketplace leaving Islanders with a lack of options.
For decades Islanders have watched their internet bills creep up at the whim of larger players. When your cries for help fell on deaf ears, your local ISP’s proudly stepped up pouring their own resources into addressing the problem that industry giants blatantly ignored. We will continue to do our best against these unbalanced market forces to increase our geographical expansions and to innovate bleeding edge technologies. It won’t be easy.
What can I do?
Write and/or call your MLA’s and let them know from this point forward that you expect your hard earned tax money to stay in the province.
MOST IMPORTANTLY, continue to choose local. Tell your friends and neighbours of local businesses you support. If you receive good service, write about it on social media platforms. Every small business owner rejoices when a customer acknowledges a job well done. These kudos can often be the one small kindness that gets them through their day.
Remember, when you choose local, you choose us and we are you.
Wicked EH? Incorporated