February 23, 2017

FCC Approves Manchin Priorities to Expand Broadband Access in West Virginia

Agency votes on Manchin’s Bipartisan Efforts to Close the Broadband Gap in Rural America

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) commended the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for answering his calls to prioritize mobile broadband deployment in rural and underserved communities through Phase II of the Mobility Fund and to protect West Virginia’s small internet service providers from burdensome regulations.

“These votes are a critical step towards expanding high-speed mobile broadband coverage in rural communities throughout West Virginia and allowing small providers in our rural communities to focus on serving consumers,” Senator Manchin said. “I look forward to continuing to work with the FCC to ensure the second phase of the Mobility Fund works for West Virginia and expands broadband coverage throughout even the most rural and remote areas of our state.”

Today’s vote on the Mobility Fund answers a bipartisan call Senator Manchin led with Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) urging the FCC to move forward with the second phase of the Mobility Fund. Senators Manchin and Wicker were joined by 28 Senators in their call on the FCC to prioritize new mobile broadband coverage in rural communities across America. To read the full letter to the FCC, please click here.

Today’s vote to relieve small internet service providers from overly burdensome reporting requirements aligns with the Small Business Broadband Deployment Act, which Senator Manchin introduced with Senator Daines (R-MT) earlier this year and grants their request outlined in a letter to the FCC late last year. This temporary exemption allows small providers to focus on serving consumers rather than forcing them to comply with burdensome reporting requirements that cost small businesses time and money. To read the full letter urging the FCC to take action and extend the exemption, please click here.