Harrisburg, PA – Last week, Pennsylvania House passed new state broadband Internet access law that will direct funding to rural and underserved communities.
House Bill 2071 enables the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority to coordinate and facilitate planned funding through a federal infrastructure bill recently approved by Congress.
The Commonwealth is initially expected to receive at least $ 100 million, with the possibility of getting more once the authority draws up a statewide broadband expansion plan, officials say. of the state sponsoring the bill.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has proven once and for all that high-speed internet access is not a luxury but a necessity,” said Representative Martin Causer. “Successful broadband expansion depends on coordination and funding, and this new law addresses both. This is what we need to cross the finish line by providing broadband to everyone who needs it. “
Under the bill, the authority would serve as a single point of contact for parties interested in broadband development or broadband development, helping to minimize duplication and maximize the use of existing infrastructure.
The authority would also be responsible for identifying access to funding sources and helping to coordinate joint efforts for broadband development.