August 10, 2021
Manchin: New FCC Broadband Coverage Map Shows West Virginia's Lack Of Broadband Coverage
The new FCC interactive broadband coverage map can be found here
Washington, DC – After years of urging from U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a new, interactive broadband coverage map that details the coverage reported by four major broadband providers. The new FCC map shows the significant lack of broadband coverage across West Virginia in comparison to coverage across the rest of the nation. Since 2016, Senator Manchin has pushed for the FCC to fix the incorrect broadband coverage maps that determine eligibility for federal funds intended to help expand broadband access. Today, the Senate passed the bipartisan infrastructure bill that includes $65 billion, much of which will be distributed based on the updated FCC maps.
West Virginians can search the map to see if the FCC map accurately depicts whether they have broadband coverage in their community or not. If the FCC map is not accurate then West Virginians can provide input to Senator Manchin by submitting a speed test that he will send to the FCC on their behalf.
“The FCC recently released a new interactive map that shows West Virginia is literally a big hole in broadband coverage across the nation,” said Senator Manchin. “For years, I have been working with the FCC to update their incorrect broadband coverage maps and incorporate the input of West Virginians in the process. This map is a good first step and will help West Virginians figure out if the FCC says they have broadband coverage or not. I encourage every West Virginian to take a speed test if the map doesn’t line up with what they experience on a daily basis, and I will continue working with the FCC to fix the incorrect broadband maps and increase broadband access for all West Virginians.”
Senator Manchin’s recent work to update the incorrect broadband maps:
- In August 2021, the U.S. Senate passed the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which includes $65 billion for broadband deployment, access, and affordability. Specifically, it includes $42.45 billion in grants to states based on a formula from Senator Manchin’s Eliminate the Digital Divide Act, which provides funds to states through their proportion of unserved areas. Based on the updated FCC maps, the bipartisan infrastructure bill also includes provisions to speed up the FCC’s implementation of the Broadband DATA Act and make it more accessible to consumers and inclusive to communities.
- In June 2021, Senator Manchin submitted another group of speed tests from West Virginians to the FCC to assist in efforts to quickly update the broadband coverage maps. Over 2,400 West Virginians have submitted speed tests to Senator Manchin.
- In April 2021, Senator Manchin led 17 Senators in calling on the FCC to ensure that state, local and tribal governments are included in efforts to update nationwide broadband maps.
- In February 2021, Senator Manchin applauded the FCC’s announcement of the establishment of a task force to fix the incorrect maps.
- In October 2020, Senator Manchin submitted over 2,000 broadband speed tests from West Virginians to the FCC to prove the FCC’s broadband coverage maps are incorrect and must be fixed.
- In March 2020, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Act (Broadband DATA Act). This bill will help to fix the country’s faulty broadband coverage maps and contains several key provisions that came directly from Senator Manchin’s efforts as well as his bill, the Map Improvement Act of 2019.
A timeline of Senator Manchin’s efforts to expand broadband can be found here.
The new FCC interactive broadband coverage map can be found here.
To submit a speed test, click here.
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