Development authority to create state broadband maps for high-speed internet expansion

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Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority voted earlier this month to create and update state broadband maps, which will help determine the best funding allocations for high-speed internet expansion.

The maps will be implemented through a contract with Penn State Extension, an educational organization dedicated to science-based information. It will promote digital equity in underserved populations through strategic partnerships; provide geo-analytics, data analysis, and cost estimating for fiber to the premises to support local data-driven decisions about broadband deployment; and evaluate the accuracy of Federal Communications Commission data to inform.

“Contracting with Penn State Extension will bring the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority one step closer to meeting its mission to expand broadband services to unserved and underserved areas of the commonwealth,” Authority Executive Director Brandon Carson said. “The services Penn State Extension will provide will help to close the digital divide and allow Pennsylvanians to get connected at home, work, or on the road.”

The project is expected to end on June 30.

Pennsylvania will receive a portion of the $42.5 billion allocated to the federal Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment program. The program will distribute funds based on each state’s percentage of unserved locations. This is why determining the correct number of unserved and underserved households is important.