NEW YORK, USA — Parts of New York State will receive federal funding for high-speed broadband internet. The announcement was made Wednesday morning by Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.
$16,183,329 million was allocated by the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Connect America Fund to be put towards expanding broadband internet to under-served rural areas of New York. The funds were reallocated to New York State after Verizon declined to accept money from the Connect America Fund to further improve broadband service in rural areas.
Along with current loan funding from the USDA, grants will be allotted up to 50 percent for high-need rural and tribal areas, and up to 75 percent for remote high-need areas.
Broadband internet will be expanded in various locations across Western New York, including but not limited to: 26 locations in Erie County, 60 locations in Wyoming County, 42 locations in Livingston County, 2,883 locations in Cattaraugus County, and 3,005 locations in Allegany County.
“Everyone deserves reliable and fast internet access,” said Gillibrand. “Families, workers, and businesses who can’t access broadband are cut off from critical services and economic opportunities – it’s a necessity in the 21st century economy. I was proud to fight to make sure this funding to expand broadband access for our rural communities would stay in New York. This funding is great news and it will help give more communities throughout Upstate New York greater ability to get online and stay competitive. I will continue working to ensure our communities have the resources they need to thrive.”