Pennsylvania alone among states to modify anti-municipal language in BEAD proposals
December 21, 2023
BEAD: $1.2 B
Treasury Capital Projects Fund: $278.8 M
The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development state broadband authority serves as the state’s point of contact for broadband related activities.
Governor Tom Wolf joined with 11 other state governors in June 2020 asking the federal government for money to fund broadband networks.
Funding for broadband:
In July, 2021, a Pennsylvania House bill was introduced which would “devote $500 million of Pennsylvania's $7 billion federal infusion in American Rescue Plan allocation toward improving broadband access.”
Unserved High-Speed Broadband Funding Program: The Unserved High-Speed Broadband Funding Program authorizes the Commonwealth Financing Authority to award grants that shall not exceed $1 million or 75 percent of the total project costs, whichever is less. This award may be granted to nongovernmental entities that have expertise with high-speed broadband service infrastructure in unserved areas of the state.
Pennsylvania Economic Development Financing Authority Tax Exempt Bond Program: The Tax Exempt Bond Program provides tax exempt bonds which can be used for broadband deployment.
Pennsylvania Economic Development Financing Authority Taxable Bond Program: The Taxable Bond Program provides taxable bonds which can be used for broadband deployment.
Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority: The Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority provides low-interest loans and lines of credit for eligible businesses, which can be used for broadband deployment.
Pennsylvania First Program: The Pennsylvania First Program provides grants, loans, and loan guarantees for eligible entities which can be used for broadband deployment.
Pennsylvania's Joint State Government Commission released a detailed report in June 2021 outlining current funding opportunities, business models and use cases for broadband in the state.
Penn State Extension makes a map of the FCC’s Form 477 data available and includes data census block group level data about reserve prices, and the locations of existing structure, including transmission lines, substation, and tower data.
In 2019, Penn State researchers investigated the validity of broadband availability data and found that broadband speeds and availability are much lower than data suggest.
Microsoft’s November 2019 data show that approximately 6.2 million people in Pennsylvania do not use the Internet at broadband speeds.
December 21, 2023
April 11, 2023