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We are currently working with Fayette County, and the Southern Alleghenies Planning and Development Commission.  They are conducting a broadband feasibility study to determine the best path to a comprehensive broadband network for our region.


Fayette not among counties to receive state funding for broadband expansion


Fifty-three projects across 42 Pennsylvania counties will share in a combined $204 million in grants awarded by the state’s Broadband Development Authority.

Fayette County was not one of them, and with about 2,5000 unserved or underserved locations, the commissioners have questioned why.

“Our application was strong and focused on the authority’s guidelines, especially for broadband equity in underserved, unserved and distressed counties,” said Commissioner Scott Dunn. “Add in Fayette County’s proven track record on broadband projects, (and) I fail to understand how Fayette County didn’t meet the criteria for funding.”

The funding, awarded through the authority’s Broadband Infrastructure Program, was announced Thursday.

In April 2023, the county released results of a broadband survey that studied which areas in Fayette had poor or no internet service. Among the worst, said Fayette County Redevelopment Authority Executive Director Andrew French, were Franklin and Jefferson township.

The study found that one-third of the students at Franklin Elementary School didn’t have access to the internet at home, and the Jefferson Township supervisors can’t get online in their municipal office.

Located in the northwest corner of Fayette County, the townships have about 662 addresses where there is no internet access or poor internet access.

“And there’s pockets (of poor or no access) everywhere,” French said on Friday.

He estimated there are approximately 2,500 unserved and underserved locations in Fayette.

Commissioner Dave Lohr said he hoped that advocacy efforts by the commissioners and other county officials would have helped the county receive some of the state grant funding. He noted the commissioners made a visit to the Broadband Development Authority’s office in Harrisburg to advocate for the funding in person.

“Now we’ll have to find other avenues to get the job accomplished,” Lohr said. “We’ve got a good start to our broadband project, and we need to keep working all the way through to get the rest of it done. It’s onto the next phase and applying for other grants.”

Commissioner Vince Vicites said the county will now look to the federal Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program.

“I’m disappointed. We did everything we could to be in a position to get maximum funding, and we got nothing.” Vicites said. “That’s a concern, but we still have other opportunities for funding with BEAD money, and we’re going to vigorously pursue that next.”

The Township Supervisors' meetings for 2024 will be held on the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 3:00 p.m. at the Municipal Building.

Jefferson Township, Fayette County is announcing that a portion of Cope Road (TR 494) will be closed from 2/5/2024 until 4/1/2024 due to a bridge repair project. The closure will be 2 miles from the intersection of Pittsburgh St. (Route 51) and 1 mile from the intersection with Fayette City Road (Route 201)

To see our calendar please click the following link. (Click Here)

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