Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced that $5 million is available for projects that expand high-speed broadband service infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas through the Unserved High-Speed Broadband Funding Program (UHSB). The application period opens June 1.
“Pennsylvania’s broadband internet access limitations create an unfair playing field, leaving too many counties disadvantaged in the state’s digital divide,” said Gov. Wolf. “The challenging last year only magnified how critical the need for this access is for everyone—for school, for work, and for leisure—and this program marks an important step in the commonwealth’s continued efforts to close that digital divide.”
The UHSB authorizes the Commonwealth Financing Authority (CFA) to award grants to nongovernmental entities which have the technical, managerial, and financial expertise to design, build, and operate a high-speed broadband service infrastructure in unserved areas.
Applications will be accepted from June 1 through September 24, 2021.
UHSB funding supports projects that can offer access to high-speed broadband services that will enhance economic development, education, health care, and emergency services. The program will further expand broadband access through new private sector investments.
The CFA was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) to administer Pennsylvania’s economic stimulus packages. The CFA holds fiduciary responsibility over the funding of programs and investments in Pennsylvania’s economic growth. Unique among state agencies in structure and scope, the CFA consists of seven Board members: four legislative appointees and the secretaries of DCED, the Office of the Budget, and Department of Banking and Securities.