Ontario Expanding Access to the Modern Digital Economy
The Ontario government is expanding access to reliable broadband and cellular service in underserved and unserved parts of the province. The application intake for the $150 million Improving Connectivity for Ontario program (ICON) opens today. This funding will help drive economic investment and job creation across the province, while allowing more people to work from home more efficiently, engage in online learning, and connect with family and friends.
"The outbreak of COVID-19 reinforced the need to improve access to reliable broadband and cellular service as more people work and learn from home in order to practice physical distancing," said Laurie Scott, Minister of Infrastructure. "By making these investments we will help to ensure every region in the province can participate in the modern digital economy, and contribute to Ontario's economic recovery."
Any areas across Ontario that do not meet the national standards for broadband speeds would be eligible for provincial funding. Up to 12 per cent of households in the province - mostly in rural, remote or northern areas - don't have adequate broadband service, according to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.