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FCC awards $121 million in rural broadband funding

By December 10, 2020No Comments

By Riley Bean | December 9, 2020 at 10:18 AM EST – Updated December 9 at 1:19 PM

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) – Senator Lindsey Graham’s office says the FCC has awarded the state of South Carolina $121 million in rural broadband funding for over 100,000 unserved homes and businesses.

A statement made by the senator’s office said Graham introduced the Governors’ Broadband Development Fund with Senator Tim Scott (R-South Carolina) and Senator Mark Warner (D-Virginia). Graham says the initiative was designed to support deployment of advanced technologies in areas where there is greatest need.

“This is very good news for South Carolina,” said Graham. “While it doesn’t solve the problem completely, it is another positive step in the right direction.

According to the FCC, about 21 million Americans do not have access to 25/3 mbps internet, which is the FCC’s standard for high-speed broadband. Of that 21 million, Graham’s office says 16 million live in rural areas, while 5 million live in urban areas. This funding will help 108,833 unserved homes and businesses across South Carolina, Graham says.

“There are places in South Carolina you might as well be on the moon when it comes to getting high-speed internet service,” Graham said. “All South Carolinians should be able to utilize the educational, tele-health, and business benefits of accessible and affordable broadband.”

Graham’s office says funding will be provided to CCO Holdings, Horry Telephone Cooperative, NRTC Phase I RDOF Consortium, Palmetto Telephone Communications, Rural Electric Cooperative Consortium, Sandhill Telephone Cooperative, Space Exploration Technologies Corp, WC Fiber, and Windstream Services to provide additional broadband to South Carolina customers who currently lack access to broadband.

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