County officials discuss broadband image | News, Sports, Jobs

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The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted deficiencies in Internet access in rural areas.

The government is investing money in it, but what that will mean on the ground is anything but clear.

County commissioners have expressed a desire to use some of the $ 7.8 million the county has received as part of the broadband bailout funding as well.

Warren County Commissioner Tricia Durbin discussed the issue with the Warren County Intergovernmental Co-op on Wednesday evening.

The county, she detailed, is exploring several potential options to improve internet service in the county.

The Big Post is a $ 20 million federal grant in conjunction with Youngsville Television.

“(We) haven’t heard from them at all”, Durbin said, noting that she doesn’t think the lack of news is good news.

She explained that there was $ 288 million available in this funding stream and that the county is “Ask a significant part of this. It is to wait and see.

Durbin said she worked with county IT contractor Bill Gallagher and Harry Crissy with the Penn State Extension. This includes exploration “Which third party vendors are in the community” and “think of pockets of opportunity there.” For example, could the reach of an existing supplier be increased through funding.

It would be one way, she said, for the county funding “Make a difference in the community”.

She told city officials that there are other federal funding sources that require areas to reach a threshold of under-served.

“We are reaching this threshold”, she added. “There will be more help with this.”

But Durbin said the challenge now is “confusing” nature of funding sources.

“It’s going to be everywhere and nowhere my fear” she said. “Pockets of money here, there and everywhere.”

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