Many Austin residents experience barriers to access to city services offered over the Internet. What do you see as the city’s responsibility regarding digital inclusion, and what steps would you take to address that concern?

Digital inclusion is a critical element of the City’s responsibility to ensure that all
Austinites have the opportunity to fully participate in our society including but
certainly not limited to city services offered over the Internet.

As a Council Member (2008-2014), I worked with the community to rally the City
to develop, in collaboration with the Community Technology and
Telecommunications Commission, a Digital Inclusion Strategic Plan (DISP)
(Resolution 20140320-056). The plan was adopted by the Council on November
20, 2014. The City’s Telecommunications and Regulatory Affairs Office continues
to this day to coordinate its implementation with the Digital Empowerment
Community of Austin.

Critical to measuring our progress in this realm is an update to the Residential
Technology Survey which is currently in work in partnership with the UT Moody
College of Communication. While initial results show improvements in access
within the city limits, the City should at this point partner with the County to
broaden the survey to cover all of Travis County to ensure we are capturing
effects of gentrification: improvement in City results may be reflecting the effects
of displacement.

As mayor in 2019, I will support a broader, countywide survey, and promote a 5-
year review of the implementation of the DISP to evaluate progress, revise the
plan where need be, and dedicate necessary resources to its continued effort.