April 12, 2019

Manchin Encouraged By FCC And Trump Administration's Proposal Of $20 Billion Fund For Rural Broadband

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) was encouraged by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Trump Administration’s proposal of a $20.4 billion fund designated for rural broadband investment through the FCC’s new Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. 

“I am intrigued by the Administration’s proposal and applaud them for highlighting the need for investment in rural broadband. While this announcement signals a positive step forward in bridging the digital divide, unless we fix our broadband coverage maps and ensure this new program has a dedicated amount set aside for places with mountainous terrain, I am concerned West Virginia will not see a dime of this funding,” said Senator Manchin. “I look forward to reviewing their plan further, following their proposal as it goes through the rule-making process at the FCC and working with the President and the FCC to make sure this new program is in the best interest of West Virginia.”

Once approved by the FCC, the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund would provide $20.4 billion over 10 years in rural broadband. The investment will be made in the form of subsidies available to eligible companies through a competitive auction in order to build-out high speed broadband in unserved areas.