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As a millennial, my career path hasn’t followed a traditional model. I currently have two jobs, I work from home doing court transcripts, and I also work remotely for a public relations company. These jobs depend on reliable, high speed broadband internet access.

I am not alone in being a telecommuter in Montana. In late 2015, the employment website flexjobs.com found that Montana ranks No. 1 among all states in the percentage of workers who telecommute.

Telecommuters are an incredibly positive influence on Montana’s communities. Workers earning wages from outside the region or state create a ripple effect on local economies as they spend their incomes at local stores, restaurants and services. Every day, workers like me and our communities benefit from these new outposts on the information superhighway.

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Unfortunately, only 44.6 percent of Montanans are served by hard-wired internet connections that are considered broadband speeds. We must do better. That is why I urge Governor Bullock to sign SB 239 into law. This legislation will provide incentives to companies to build more fiber broadband infrastructure in Montana.

Aly Russell

Livingston

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