18% of the Delta Regional Authority’s 252 rural counties and parishes lack high-speed Internet service. The percentage of Delta region school districts operating a website lags behind the national average, 54% compared to 62%. There are significant disparities between the Internet services and pricing available to rural and metro-area small businesses, according to the Small Business Administration.
The Delta Regional Authority iDelta initiative will expand broadband infrastructure, increase computer and internet adoption, and ultimately increase the number of companies, workers and students using information technology in the rural Delta counties and parishes. Economic development efforts can be enhanced, exponentially, through the proper application of technology.
As part of the iDelta initiative, DRA partnered with Connect Arkansas to increase awareness, use and deployment of broadband resources in Desha, Phillips, and Arkansas Counties. A pilot, demonstration wireless broadband was launched in Coahoma County, Mississippi to promote adoption by public and private entities.
iDelta Volume I: Report and Data for Information Technology in the Delta
iDelta Volume II: Recommendations for Information Technology in the Delta