Detroit Regional Chamber > Advocacy in Action > Gov. Whitmer Signs Executive Directive to Continue Ongoing Expansion of High-Speed Internet Access  

Gov. Whitmer Signs Executive Directive to Continue Ongoing Expansion of High-Speed Internet Access  

November 30, 2021
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Nov. 29, issued an executive directive (ED) to state departments and agencies to collaborate with the legislature and ready the state to continue expanding high-speed internet access. This is in preparation for the federal funding Michigan is expected to receive over the next five years specifically for high-speed internet from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. In a press release, the Governor’s office shared the state will continue working to lower the cost of internet service, and help families, communities, and small businesses get and stay connected to affordable, reliable high-speed service.

The terms of the ED include:

  • Putting Michigan workers and businesses first, prioritizing in-state businesses and workers as the state continues building up high-speed internet infrastructure.
  • Helping local communities build more efficiently, using the “dig once” principle to complete work on water, high-speed internet, the road, and other utilities simultaneously wherever possible. 
  • Prioritizing the improvement of high-speed internet infrastructure in communities with the slowest speeds first to ensure we are making equitable investments.
  • Collaborating with local service providers to develop an even more granular, comprehensive map of internet coverage in Michigan to strategically close the digital divide. 
  • Developing a digital equity plan to identify barriers to internet access, make long-term plans with counties and communities to improve access, and assess how enhanced access improves a range of other social, economic, and health-related outcomes.

Chamber Perspective

The expansion and improvement of broadband access for all Michiganders is among the Detroit Regional Chamber’s legislative priorities and vision for Michigan’s equitable, global competitiveness. As part of the Chamber’s long-term advocacy framework, it will continue to promote private investment, along with state and federal grants, to further statewide broadband expansion and improvement for education and employment opportunities. This will help create a more business-friendly environment in the state and foster a stronger education system and more robust, diverse talent pipeline.

View the full executive directive.