Cork North West TD, Aindrias Moynihan has said that it is simply inexcusable in 2016 that people across the county are unable to rely on broadband internet and work from home, if they so choose.
“The rollout of the National Broadband Plan has been nothing short of shambolic, and the Government are working at the speed of a 1990s dial-up connection”, said the Fianna Fáil TD.
Deputy Moynihan was commenting as more and more constituents complain to him about the poor level of broadband service in Co. Cork.
“This isn’t a rural issue alone. There are parts of the county, close to the city, that just cannot get access to decent broadband.
“People living in Ballinora, Ovens and all the way out to Ballingeary are often left without decent broadband, or no broadband at al.
“In the Templemartin and Crossbarry areas, for example, many people would like to access quality broadband services so that they can work from home or even just access the internet to engage with various government departments.
“The Government expect farmers to submit many documents and forms to the Department of Agriculture online, but I’m being told of situations where halfway through the process, residents’ broadband connections simply cut out.
“I’ve raised this issue with the Minister for Communications, and his answer is deeply frustrating.
“The Minister has informed me that Templemartin has been designated as an Amber area. This is supposed to ensure a special state intervention to ensure the provision of broadband.
“It is intended that homes and businesses within this area will have access to services of at least 30 megabits per second when the procurement process is completed and the network rolled out.
“While this is a welcome acceptance of the need for extra attention, I am concerned that we are not future proofing the network.
“30 mbps is woefully low as a target when the US government have already determined that anything less than 25 mbps cannot be classed as broadband.
“We need foresight from the Department of Communications. We need a realisation that due to the major delays in rolling out the NBP the standards set in 2011 or 2012 are now out of date.
“Without such forward planning, we will be many years behind our global competitors,” concluded Moynihan.