PENNSYLVANIA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Broadband is expanding across Pennsylvania, but it’s vital that you speak up.
That’s the message from the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority, who says residents need to ensure their information is correct on the new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) broadband access map. If not, it could mean losing funding in your area.
The map shows all broadband serviceable locations across the United States where fixed broadband internet access service is or can be installed. Allocation of funding for broadband under the federal infrastructure law depends upon the map being accurate.
“This map provides information on the level of internet service available at each address across the country,” Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority Executive Director Brandon Carson said. “The map will be used to determine how the $42 billion available through the Federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill will be allocated to the states to support broadband expansion.”
Carson will be traveling to Somerset County on Tuesday, Dec. 13 and Elk County on Wednesday, Dec. 14 to hold listening sessions for Pennsylvanians to learn about the broadband funding and hear about the important role they have in reviewing the FCC’s map.
Here are the following listening sessions in our central region:
- Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 2:00 p.m. – Somerset County
In-person only listening session will be held at Glencoe United Church of Christ, 128 Critchfield Street, Fairhope, PA 15538
- Wednesday, Dec. 14 at 2:00 p.m. – Elk County
Hybrid listening session
In-person will be held at North Central PA Regional Planning and Development Commission, 49 Ridgmont Drive, Ridgway, PA 1585
More information on the listening sessions can be found on the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development website.
Access to high-speed internet also plays an important role in public safety which is a point that was touched on by Northern York County Regional Police Chief David Lash.
“I think you can agree with me that most of us take wireless access wireless connectivity for granted,” Lash said. “Communications between all responding assets need to take place. Due to the complexity of the conversation and situation, they can’t take place over a traditional two-way police radio.”
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The survey is also being encouraged by county governments across the commonwealth and many have posted a link to their websites. The map can also be accessed at broadbandmap.fcc.gov. The survey only takes about five minutes and the deadline is on Friday, Jan 13.