Schumer, Gillibrand announce $395k in Appalachian Regional Commission funding for Southern Tier

Funding Will Be Used To Expand Broadband Wireless Service Across Allegany, Cattaraugus And Chautauqua Counties

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced this week that $395,000 in federal funding will be flowing to the Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development Board (STW) in Salamanca for the Southwest New York Broadband project. The federal funding was allocated through the Appalachian Regional Commission and will be used to acquire and install new broadband internet equipment, including backhaul fiber.

The senators explained this new equipment will be used to expand broadband wireless service to eight rural communities in Allegany, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua Counties. Specifically, the funding will provide high-speed broadband to over 1,100 locations, including 206 small businesses, 121 agricultural sites and 10 tourism destinations.

“Much like the telephone, electricity and television, the internet has gone from a luxury to a necessity. Communities across Upstate New York, like those in Allegany, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua Counties, require it to build economic development, to create good-paying jobs, to communicate, to access health care, to shop, and to learn,” Senator Schumer explained.

“Fortunately, with this significant federal investment, the Southern Tier West Regional Planning and Development Board will finally have the resources needed to close the far-too-large digital gap. I’ll continue fighting tooth and nail to secure funding that brings our rural economies Upstate into the 21st century,” he added.

The ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian region.

“Reliable and fast internet access is a necessity in the 21st century economy,” Senator Gillibrand added.  “Families, workers, and businesses who can’t access broadband are cut off from critical services and economic opportunities. This funding is great news and it will help give more communities in Allegany, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties greater ability to get online and stay competitive. I will continue fighting in the Senate to ensure that our communities have the resources they need to be successful.”




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