State grants for broadband include 154 addresses in Orleans

Staff Reports Posted 1 March 2018 at 2:21 pm

The state has announced $225.5 million in broadband grants today, including $36,699 to serve 154 addresses in Orleans County.

The NY Broadband Program Round III grants will fund broadband infrastructure and support connections for nearly 129,000 locations statewide, according to an announcement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

In Orleans, the grants include $12,758 for 51 addresses in Barre, $6,773 for 29 addresses in Yates, $5,670 for 21 addresses in Shelby, $4,568 for 15 addresses in the Town of Albion, $2,678 for 15 spots in Ridgeway, $2,363 for 15 addresses in Gaines, $12,600 for six sites in Clarendon, and $630 for two addresses in Carlton. Hughes Network Systems LLC will be the contractor for the work in Orleans.

The Orleans numbers pale compared to other rural GLOW counties.

In Genesee County, the state is providing $118,603 in grants for 519 addresses in Alabama, Alexander, Bethany, Elba and Le Roy.

In Livingston County, the state grants total $274,203 for 881 addresses in Groveland, Ossian, Portage, Springwater and York.

Wyoming County is the biggest recipient of the four rural counties for the grants with $727,528 for 1,031 addresses in Arcade, Castile, Eagle, Middlebury and Wethersfield.

Niagara County also was approved for $173,487 for 955 addresses in Niagara Falls, Wilson, Lockport, Somerset, Hartland and Royalton.

Niagara and Orleans officials have been working together for several years to extend rural broadband.

“Access to high-speed internet has never been more important for New York residents and businesses,” Governor Cuomo said. “By leveraging state investments with private and federal funding, we are building a stronger, smarter and more competitive New York poised to lead the nation as the first state to achieve total connectivity.”

When the New NY Broadband Program was launched in 2015, 30 percent of New Yorkers – approximately 2.42 million locations – lacked access to broadband, Cuomo said. This was most acute in the eight Upstate Regional Economic Development Council regions, where only 35 percent of New Yorkers had access.

As a result of the Program’s Round I awards and additional state-secured upgrades, broadband access was expanded by more than 2.2 million locations to 97 percent of New Yorkers. Round II awards then extended coverage to more than 80,000 locations to 98 percent of New Yorkers.

Today, with the announcement of Round III awards, the Program accomplishes its mission of statewide broadband availability, providing the last mile funding to ensure all New Yorkers have access to high-speed internet by the end of 2018, Cuomo said.

The program’s goal was to achieve statewide access to internet download speeds of at least 100 Megabits per second and 25 Megabits per second in the most rural and remote areas. After full implementation of the commitments announced, 99.9 percent of New Yorkers will have access to high-speed broadband – with almost 99 percent at speeds of 100 Megabits per second or greater. Consistent with the program’s prioritization of unserved areas, of the broadband funds deployed, nearly 90 percent of all funding was awarded to projects that will address unserved areas of the state, connecting these locations for the first time, Cuomo said in a news release.

(Editor’s note: This article was updated from an earlier version that said 131 addresses would receive broadband in Orleans County.)

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