VIDEO | $110-Million Del. Broadband Expansion Announced In Bridgeville
Delaware plans to invest $110-million in federal funds from the American Rescue Plan Act into reaching more parts of The First State with broadband access.
Governor John Carney and other elected officials as well as business leaders in the sector announced particulars Thursday in Bridgeville. The expansion is also expected to increase Internet speeds. Carney said the state also will look to address affordability concerns as more learning, work and other activities take place online.
“Delawareans rely on stable internet connections to apply for jobs, help their children do homework, work from home, or continue their education online,” Carney said. “This significant investment will recognize that reality, and make sure all Delaware families have access to high-speed broadband service. We know that’s more important than ever after the lessons we’ve learned during the COVID-19 pandemic. I want to thank Delaware’s federal delegation for voting to approve the American Rescue Plan Act, and President Joe Biden for signing this important legislation into law.”
According to the state, about 11,600 Delaware homes and businesses do not have access to high-speed wireline broadband service. Investments will be targeted to areas that are unserved or underserved, that lack a wireless connection, and will prioritize projects that finish “last mile” connections to households and businesses.
For a map of areas most in need of expanded broadband service, please Click here
“The coronavirus pandemic has shown just how much Americans rely on the Internet for school, running a business, or simply getting health care. Unfortunately, too many people across the First State do not have access to a reliable Internet connection,” Senator Tom Carper, D-Del. said. “When our Congressional delegation was working on the American Rescue Plan, we knew we needed to provide robust and flexible funding for states to address their own unique needs. I’m so glad the state is using funds from the American Rescue Plan to address this digital divide, and I applaud Governor Carney’s leadership in combatting this pandemic and moving Delaware forward.”
“Many of the local officials have long said that additional investment must be made in broadband connectivity,” Senate Minority Whip Brian Pettyjohn, R-Georgetown added. “As the events of the past year have painfully shown, the infrastructure required to support business, remote learning, and other activities vital in the modern world are simply not in place. This investment will make our communities more competitive in a global economy, allow our students to have equal access to information for learning, and provide health, safety, and security enhancements to even the most remote areas in our state.”