County

Communication union districts continue broadband rollout

Town by town, Vermont is getting connected thanks to communication union districts (CUDs) rolling out fiber cable. The Vermont Community Broadband Board says the work of the CUDs is moving the needle, with the vast majority of Vermonters getting access to fiber connection, something they say is a change from a year-and-a-half ago. Davis Brakeley calls his experience of trying to surf the web just over a year ago “the dark ages.” Brakeley is on the board of trustees of the Shard Villa Residential Care Home in Salisbury.

Los Angeles County to offer discounted home internet to lower-income residents in some neighborhoods

Los Angeles County has started work on a wireless broadband network that will deliver high-speed connections for as little as $25 a month. The county signed a contract with WeLink of Lehi, Utah, to build the network and offer the service in East Los AngelesBoyle Heights and South Los Angeles.

Understanding What Makes Broadband Champions

Broadband champions can be the decisive factors in efforts to improve community connectivity. The work of broadband champions has been shaped by the particularities of their broadband contexts: the local political will, the existing providers, the topography, and the wide-ranging motivations and strategies. What they have in common is their dedication, which has proved to be crucial in helping their communities get high-speed broadband.

Windstream, Georgia Electric Co-Op Partner on $39 Million Public-Private Partnership

Windstream, Colquitt Electric Membership Cooperative (EMC) and Lowndes County (GA), are teaming up on a $39 million public-private partnership to bring broadband to about 16,000 locations in the county. Windstream is contributing about $17.6 million. The other $21.7 million is funded through the Georgia State Fiscal Recovery Fund and the county. Windstream will handle cost overruns. The project, which will provide multi-gigabit service to users, will include 806 miles of fiber.

Navajo County (AZ) and eX² Technology Join Forces to Expand Broadband Capacity

Navajo County Board of Supervisors and eX² Technology joined together with Governor Hobbs (D-AZ), community members, elected officials, and local, state, and national leaders to celebrate the official groundbreaking and construction of a more than 100-mile open-access, dark fiber middle-mile network infrastructure to expand broadband throughout Navajo County (AZ). The network will provide Navajo County with the ability to sustain the broadband capacity to support municipal fiber,

2024 National Findings Report: Creating Thriving Communities Through Civic Participation

County Health Rankings & Roadmaps' (CHR&R) 2024 National Findings Report highlights the importance of civic infrastructure and spaces to connect and be informed, with a focus on access to local news, broadband internet and public libraries. CHR&R calls attention to structural barriers like policies, laws and practices that can create obstacles to forms of participation such as voting and worker unionizing. Key findings include:

FCC chair holds roundtable on net neutrality in Campbell (CA) ahead of agency vote

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel held a roundtable discussion about the vote on net neutrality with community leaders and agencies at the Santa Clara County Fire Department in Campbell, California.  She chose the site to focus on how restoring net neutrality would benefit public safety, pointing to how that very fire department had had its internet access throttled—or cut off—automatically when it hit its internet use cap during the 2018 Mendocino Fire.  Chairwoman Rosenworcel heard from the department’s assistant fire chief, Brian Glass, who said fire agenci

AT&T to deliver fiber-powered broadband to more than 530 customers in rural Lawrence County (IN)

Lawrence County (IN) announced a nearly $2.6 million public-private project with AT&T to expand AT&T Fiber to an estimated 530 customer locations in rural areas of the county. AT&T will invest more than $1.6 million, and Lawrence County will invest $950,000 in a project to provide fiber services to residential and business addresses in rural areas of west central Lawrence County. Extensive planning and engineering work for this project will begin in the second quarter of 2024. The network buildout is expected to be complete within two years.

Internet providers have left rural Americans behind. One county is fighting back

Congress is spending $65 billion to connect the rural United States to the world. Orangeburg (SC) knows the stakes better than anywhere. Like hundreds of rural counties across the US, Orangeburg is ignored by commercial broadband service providers who think it’s not profitable to lay fiber optic lines in the area. In the absence of service from companies like AT&T, Comcast, Verizon and Charter, counties and small towns in rural America could build broadband networks for their residents themselves, which can make the difference between prosperity and poverty.

Chairwoman Rosenworcel Announces Members of Intergovernmental Advisory Committee

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced the new members of the Intergovernmental Advisory Committee.  This advisory panel provides guidance, expertise, and recommendations to the FCC on telecommunications issues affecting local, county, state and Tribal governments.