434,000+ Homes and Businesses in Western N.Y. to Receive High-Speed Internet

ALBANY, NY — Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that more than 434,000 homes in Western New York will have access to high-speed Internet as part of the New NY Broadband Initiative. The program’s round one awards will connect more than 30,000 unserved homes and businesses across upstate New York to high-speed internet for the first time. More than $4 million in grants have been awarded to Western New York internet service providers as part of that effort.

Western New York Round I Award Winners

  • Armstrong Telephone Company - $1,379,927

  • Armstrong Telecommunications - $2,824,190


In addition, on the heels of its merger with Time Warner Cable, Charter has outlined its four-year rollout plan to service 145,000 currently unserved households in upstate New York. Charter will also make available Internet speeds of at least 100 megabits per second for more than 2 million upstate homes and businesses by early 2017. Once completed, these actions will ensure 97 percent of New Yorkers have the broadband access required to succeed in a 21st century economy, with the goal of serving all New Yorkers by the end of 2018.

Inclusive, Interconnected Cmmunities
“Access to high-speed internet is critical to keeping pace with the rising demands of the modern economy,” Governor Cuomo said. “The New NY Broadband Program is advancing our vision for inclusive, interconnected communities that empower individuals, support small businesses, and advance innovation. These actions are a major step forward in creating the most robust broadband infrastructure network in the nation, and ensuring that reliable, high-speed internet is available to all New Yorkers.”

Building on the progress already achieved, the Governor also announced the launch of a Request for Proposals for Round II of the State Broadband Program. The initiative will target a further extension of broadband availability to the most remote areas of the state.

Chair of the Public Service Commission Audrey Zibelman said, "With new authority provided by Governor Cuomo and the Legislature to ensure cable mergers are in the public interest, the Commission secured important conditions from Charter when it approved its acquisition of Time Warner that will result in a faster broadband network and a substantial expansion of its infrastructure to serve an additional 145,000 households. We are pleased to report that Charter is planning to deliver its speed upgrade to 100 Mbps nearly two years earlier than required, and is following through on its build-out commitments. Today's announcement is a major milestone in Governor Cuomo's plan to deliver broadband for all."

New NY Broadband Program Design
The New NY Broadband Program is designed to ensure that New York’s most remote communities receive the high-speed internet they need and deserve. The Program supports the deployment of advanced technologies to achieve the Governor’s goal of providing New Yorkers with access to internet download speeds of at least 100 Mbps in most places, and 25 Mbps in the most remote parts of the state, by the end of 2018. As a result of these speed upgrades, users will be able to download HD movies in 11 minutes — versus 2.3 hours without broadband — and credit card transactions will be processed five times faster.

Award recipients were selected through a “reverse-auction” methodology, which prioritizes bidders seeking the lowest amount of state investment per new household served. In order to avoid cost duplication, the Charter footprint was excluded from Round I. This exclusion enabled the New York State Broadband Program Office to operate with a highly targeted scope and design an innovative auction process across the state, while preserving state funds.

Round II of the Program will address additional unserved and underserved homes and businesses. Round II Request for Proposal Guidelines and application questions are now available on the New York State BPO’s website.

The third and final phase of the New NY Broadband Program is scheduled to launch in early 2017, which will close out any remaining unaddressed service areas. Each RFP will contain refinements and enhancements that will enable the BPO to push further into unserved territory. Through the cumulative process of these three RFPs, the state is achieving its ultimate goal of broadband for all.

 

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