Former Congresswoman Reflects on Two Decades of Promoting Data Centers

Read Time:3 Minute, 34 Second

INTERVIEW ON THE PRICE OF BUSINESS SHOW, MEDIA PARTNER OF THIS SITE.

Recently Kevin Price, Host of the nationally syndicated Price of Business Show, interviewed Barbara Comstock.

Price and Comstock discuss the latter’s history of fighting for more data centers in the US. She noted the new efforts by Biden, coming two decades after major milestones she made in the Virginia Legislature.

Former Congresswoman Barbara Comstock played a significant role in promoting the development of data centers in Virginia during her time in the Virginia House of Delegates and later in the U.S. House of Representatives. Her efforts contributed to making Northern Virginia one of the largest data center hubs in the world. Here are some key aspects of her involvement:

Advocacy and Legislation

State Legislature:

  • Incentives and Legislation: As a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from 2010 to 2014, Comstock supported legislation that provided tax incentives for technology companies, including those building and operating data centers. These incentives were designed to attract large technology investments to the region.
  • Infrastructure Development: She advocated for improvements in infrastructure, such as high-speed internet and reliable power supplies, which are critical for data center operations.

U.S. House of Representatives:

  • Federal Support: As a U.S. Congresswoman from 2015 to 2019, Comstock continued to support policies that benefited the technology sector. She worked on federal policies that aligned with state initiatives to make Virginia an attractive location for tech companies.
  • Cybersecurity and Technology Workforce: Comstock was also a strong proponent of cybersecurity measures and initiatives to develop a skilled technology workforce. She recognized that a robust cybersecurity framework and a well-trained workforce were essential for the success and security of data centers.

Impact and Outcomes

Economic Growth:

  • Job Creation: The establishment of data centers in Northern Virginia created thousands of high-paying jobs, both directly in the technology sector and indirectly in supporting industries.
  • Investment: The region saw significant capital investment from major technology companies such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, which chose Northern Virginia for their data center operations.

Strategic Location:

  • Connectivity: Northern Virginia’s strategic location with proximity to major internet exchange points and robust infrastructure made it an ideal place for data centers.
  • Business Environment: The business-friendly environment fostered by state policies and supported by legislators like Comstock contributed to the region’s attractiveness to technology firms.

Barbara Comstock’s efforts in promoting data centers were part of a broader strategy to position Virginia as a leader in the technology sector, which has had lasting impacts on the state’s economy and its technological landscape.

 

According to a statement:

“Antitrust law protects American consumers from low-quality goods and services, but Google’s products are highly innovative and free for everyone. The Justice Department’s misguided lawsuit stretches antitrust law beyond its breaking point and risks breaking the very products that Americans love and use every day.”

Barbara represented Virginia’s Tenth Congressional District, was a senior appointee in the Justice Department, and worked as a Congressional aide. Her election marked her as the first woman elected to that seat. She was named as one of the “Top Ten Most Effective Lawmakers” in the 115th Congress by the Center for Effective Lawmaking, a joint effort of the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University.

According to a statement from Ms. Comstock, “During her time in Congress, Barbara was a leader on technology and cybersecurity issues, chairing the Science, Space, and Technology Committee’s Research and Technology subcommittee, as well as serving on the Joint Economic Committee, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, and the House Administration Committee. Her legislative achievements include passing legislation to promote women and disadvantaged populations in STEM, as well as expanding research in the technology space. Barbara also was the leader on anti-sexual harassment legislation in Congress, and legislation to tackle the opioid crisis and gang crime. She partnered with Senator McCain to reauthorize multi-year firefighter grants to increase innovation and public safety. While in Congress, Barbara was the only woman in the Virginia congressional delegation and the only Virginia member to chair a subcommittee.”

 

For more great national news stories click here.

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW IN ITS ENTIRETY HERE:

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