According to reports, 88.4% of New Hampshire Electric Cooperative members approved adding broadband internet service to its core function. That far surpassed the 67% needed to change the bylaws and turnout was about 10,000, which I’m told was “a whopping big turnout compared to past NHEC elections.”
The coop’s FAQ explains the rationale: It serves rural towns and COVID-19 has underlined the importance of fast internet, which private companies are reluctant to provide: ” Unlike for-profit telecommunications companies, NHEC is a member-owned, non-profit cooperative. … We believe that the cooperative model allows us to provide services to our members when others will not, because we are not limited by the requirement to generate profits for investors.”
My story from September about this effort can be read right here.