Tag: Broadband

A Broadband Victory for Rural Communities

A recent update from NY-19 congress-person, Antonio R. Delgado, included some positive news on our area’s ongoing broadband improvements. 

In January, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that New York State was ineligible for Phase I Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) awards. This decision would have made New York State broadband providers completely ineligible for $16 billion in funding to improve broadband internet in unserved communities. Because this would increase the digital divide, hinder economic growth and opportunity, and stall quality of life improvements for residents in our state, particularly those living in rural communities, I led a bipartisan group of my colleagues in urging the reversal of the decision. After a phone call with FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, and a follow-up letter, I’m glad to say that the FCC reversed its decision to completely exempt New York from participating in the program. This is an important step for our state, but it is just the first of many needed to ensure upstate communities aren’t once again left on the wrong side of the digital divide.

For more news and updates, visit delgado.house.gov

 

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Columbia County Awarded Big in 3rd Round of Broadband Expansion Initiative

Columbia County, and our neighbors across the river in Greene County were both big winners in the third and final round of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s initiative to secure high-speed internet for underserved areas across the state.

The New NY Broadband Program announced Phase 3 awards, which will drive more than $341.8 million of public/private broadband investment across the state. Nearly $211.3 million was awarded to broadband companies in our region under this third and final phase of the program. The program’s goal is to make high-speed internet available to every state resident by the end of 2018.

Columbia County is one of the lowest-served counties when it comes to broadband. An article in HudsonValley360.com quoted F. Michael Tucker, president and CEO of Columbia County Economic Development, as saying,

“We’re very excited by the governor’s announcement for the Round III broadband award,” said Tucker. “While we are still assessing the details, the fact that G-Tel, FairPoint and Mid-Hudson Cable and other Columbia County providers received significant awards is terrific news in connection with the governor’s efforts to provide broadband for all.”

To see the full list of Phase 3 Awarded companies, visit the official NY Broadband Program site by clicking here.

The next step for the broadband program is for officials and winning broadband providers to discuss where the broadband service will be extended.

 

For more local happenings, news, and events, follow ColumbiaCountyCurrent.com on twitter @CoCoCurrent.

Jeff McKinney is a Realtor in Columbia County, NY. Connect with him on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Pinterest.

Columbia County Residential Broadband Survey Available

Connect Columbia wants to hear from county residents (and businesses) about our current internet connectivity experiences. The information that they gather will be used to help identify areas of the county that need better and faster access to the internet.

Connect Columbia, a Community Action Citizens Group, has created a short and simple online survey that all residents can take. The data collected from the survey will help the group and the county’s broadband subcommittee to learn more about area internet service providers and their actual coverage areas. The ultimate goal of the group and subcommittee is to improve internet service across Columbia County.

The residential survey gives respondents the option of entering their street address. While your address is not required to fill out the survey, entering a street address will help the group’s overall mapping results. I filled out the survey, and it took about 2 minutes to complete.

SURVEY LINKS
Residential Survey:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ColumbiaCountyResidentialBroadbandSurvey

Business Survey:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ConnectColumbiaBusinessBroadbandSurvey

Connect Columbia is a Community Action Network committed to bringing affordable broadband to all residents and corners of Columbia County.

 

For more local happenings, news, and events, follow ColumbiaCountyCurrent.com on twitter @CoCoCurrent.

Jeff McKinney is a Realtor in Columbia County, NY. Connect with him on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Pinterest.