|RELEASE: Schumer announces $670 million for broadband internet expansion in NYS.|
|June 27, 2023|
SCHUMER ANNOUNCES NEW YORK STATE AWARDED AN HISTORIC NEARLY $670 MILLION FROM THE BIPARTISAN INFRASTRUCTURE & JOBS LAW TO EXPAND HIGH-SPEED INTERNET TO CLOSE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE IN NY
Bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law Allocation Is The Largest Single Federal Investment In Broadband In New York State’s History
Schumer: Record-Breaking $670M In Federal Funding Is On The Way To Close The Digital Divide In New York!
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer today announced New York state will receive a historic $664,618,251 million in federal funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act. This is the largest single investment for broadband in New York State’s history and will be used for providing affordable high-speed internet to locations in New York that currently have no broadband service.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said, “Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law we passed, a historic nearly $670 million is now on its way to expand broadband infrastructure and boost high-quality internet access across New York. Whether it is for work, school, or getting the healthcare you need, access to the internet is not luxury, but a necessity for modern life. Long before the pandemic, communities across New York, from rural communities Upstate to bustling city neighborhoods, have struggled to obtain reliable high-speed internet service. I am proud to deliver this record setting nearly $670 million for New York to help finally close the digital divide. New York, under Governor Hochul’s leadership, is leading the charge to get all New Yorkers the equitable access to the internet they deserve, and this major federal investment will help finally give our communities the support they need to succeed in the 21st century.”
“Everyone in New York deserves access to high-speed internet, and thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, we’re going to deliver just that,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the leadership of Majority Leader Schumer, we’re going to create thousands of good-paying jobs as we build out broadband infrastructure across the state.”
Specifically, the historic nearly $670 million in federal funding comes from the $42 billion Broadband Equity Access and Deployment Program (BEAD), part of the 2021 bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law. As majority leader, Schumer delivered a record $65 billion in funding to expand access to high-speed internet in underserved rural and urban communities across America. The BEAD program allocates funding directly to the states to close the digital-divide in high-cost, unserved and underserved communities. The nearly $670 million in funding will go to New York state’s ConnectALL Office.
New York state will submit an initial grant distribution proposal to President Biden’s National Telecommunication and Information Administration (NTIA). Following approval of the initial proposal, the ConnectALL Office will solicit applications from internet service providers to build new broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas of the state. That package of applications will be included in New York’s final proposal to NTIA, after which the state will receive its full BEAD allocation to issue grant awards.
According to a recent report by the New York comptroller, federal investments to expand broadband have proven extremely effective and is already bridging the gap for broadband access in New York. From 2019 to 2021, the number of New Yorkers earning less than $20,000 with a broadband subscription increased from 64% to 76%. Thanks to the historic federal investments in broadband Schumer has delivered in recent years, more than 1.3 million New York households are receiving affordable broadband subscriptions.
The BEAD allocation follows a $100 million award through the American Rescue Plan for New York State from the Treasury Department’s Coronavirus Capital Projects Fund announced by Schumer to expand high-speed internet in May and two planning grants totaling over $7 million announced in December. In addition, just last week Schumer announced $14.5+ million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program to expand broadband access across Upstate NY.
The BEAD allocation is based largely on New York’s portion of the nation’s unserved locations, as reported by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC’s map originally showed New York had 106,290 unserved locations. Schumer fought for months, both writing to the FCC to address issues with the current maps encouraging New Yorkers to make their voices heard to ensure the most accurate maps possible. In October 2022, New York issued a challenge to the FCC’s broadband data maps revealed more than 31,000 underserved and unserved locations missing from the FCC’s data, following a statewide mobilization of regional, county, and local officials and New York’s own, first-of-its-kind interactive broadband map. In May, the FCC released updated data including over 140,000 unserved locations in New York and nearly 38,000 locations that have access to the minimal level of internet speeds to qualify as underserved.