Internet access remains spotty in rural areas across the United States, a fact which is particularly true in New York State. The Niagara-Orleans Regional Alliance (NORA) was formed by two neighboring counties in Upstate New York that began losing local businesses and significant economic development opportunities because of a lack of high-speed Internet service in more rural areas. Residents, business owners, local municipalities, libraries, economic development agencies, small and agri-businesses were challenged day-to-day as were thousands of students; all found the lack of connectivity hindered their ability to connect with peers and compete in the marketplace.
The first of it's kind in the state, the goal of the NORA Rural Broadband Initiative is to ensure every resident, student, small and agri-business and each county’s rural tourism industries have access to affordable, reliable high-speed Internet that is equal to that of the more metropolitan areas in New York State.
Recognized in 2015 at the Third Annual NYS Broadband Summit with an award for the "Most Collaborative Broadband Program," the New York State Broadband Office also accepted NORA's parcel-by-parcel tracking data in order to correct and update the state's coverage maps. Legislators from Niagara and Orleans counties organized at a time when there was no footprint to form the first-of-its-kind dual alliance in the state and have developed "the" model to more accurately survery and deliver reliable broadband to rural communities.
NORA - In The Press