Gov. Andrew Cuomo has outlined a $500 million plan to bring broadband access to every New York resident by 2019.
The program, part of the “2015 State of Opportunity Agenda” and ahead of the State of the State on Wednesday, will match dollars with private broadband providers for infrastructure investments.
Access to the funds will be given to the companies that are going to provide the fastest internet to the most people at the cheapest price. Cuomo also stressed his definition of broadband will be 100Mbps, which is four times the recently announced FCC designation of 25 Mbps.
“Access to high-speed internet is critical to ensuring that all New Yorkers can reach their full potential in today’s technology-driven world,” Cuomo said. “We’re launching the largest state broadband investment in the nation in order to make that goal a reality. This is a truly bold undertaking that will improve the lives of New Yorkers in every corner of the State, and I am proud to make it a priority of our administration’s second term agenda.”
7 million New Yorkers and 113,000 business cannot get access to 100 Mbps speeds right now. More than 2,000 public schools are also unable to tap into such high-speed networks.