Governor Tom Wolf today applauded unanimous legislative passage of H.B. 2071 that will help bring high-speed internet to students, businesses and residents across Pennsylvania.
“Expanding access to high-speed internet has been one of my top priorities and the unanimous, bipartisan passage of this bill is a victory for Pennsylvania,” said Gov. Wolf. “My administration has been working closely with Democrats and Republicans on this bill, because every Pennsylvanian deserves access to broadband. High-speed internet is vital for people to do their jobs, access school and healthcare programs and stay connected.
“This represents a generational change for many rural communities that lack internet access, and for communities that do not have reliable access. With this investment and planning, we will close the digital divide, improve the cost, and bring new opportunities to communities that broadband provides.”
The bill creates the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority which will be a one stop shop to oversee and support broadband deployment. The authority will manage at least $100 million in federal aid that Pennsylvania will receive to support a coordinated and strategic rollout of broadband to more areas with construction of new towers, lines and broadband equipment and other uses.
The historic investment in reliable high-speed internet is funded by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed by Congress with bipartisan support and signed by President Joe Biden. The federal government is providing $65 billion nationwide for broadband infrastructure deployment.