Right now, the FCC wants to know if you have broadband internet access available. The Federal Communications Commission has a national broadband map indicating what they believe is the state of broadband internet access at all locations around the country. Funds are available to expand access and will be directed to those areas not covered and that’s where you come in. The FCC needs to know whether their map is accurate in the locations where you live and work.
In North East Township, there are still many areas that have few if any options. Elon Musk’s Starlink is available, but there is an upfront cost of $599 and if you don’t have a clear view of the sky, it may not work for you. Cable and fiber are the primary options for reliable and cost effective high speed access and if you’re located in the most rural areas, it may be the case you can’t get either one. If you use your phone to go online, mobile access is more available, though far slower than fixed broadband, and for many applications a phone is a poor choice.
Check and challenge if incorrect
You can check your address and see what the FCC believes you have available. If it’s correct, you’re good to go. On the other hand, if the options shown are not correct, you can submit a challenge to their map and tell them what’s wrong.
You can also submit a challenge through Erie County
Beginning Monday 12/19,2022, you have two options:
- Email the addresses of any inaccuracies on the FCC map related to internet service availability identifying the issues to: challengeFCC@eriecountypa.gov
- Call the county broadband challenge hotline at 814-451-7345 and leave a voice mail with your name, addresses of any inaccuracies on the FCC map related to internet service availability identifying the issues, and your phone number
The county will also have a web form soon which is currently under development.
Erie County will be making a bulk challenge to the FCC of all locations that need to be corrected and it’s important the information the FCC has is correct because it will affect the funds available to the county for building out broadband infrastructure.
The deadline for submitting a challenge through the county is January 12th and on the FCC website January 13th.
Don’t delay. Please make sure you check the map for your location because broadband everywhere benefits everyone, including and especially you.