Over $4 million headed to Franklin County to boost broadband infrastructure

22 April 2024- Reps. Rob Kauffman (R-Chambersburg), Rich Irvin (R-Shippensburg) and Paul Schemel (R-Waynesboro) this week applauded $4.2 million in Broadband Infrastructure Program grant funding awarded in Franklin County.

The lawmakers agreed, “This funding is essential to improving broadband service for residents and businesses in underserved areas of the county. In today’s world, almost everything is done via the internet, whether it is shopping, paying bills, doing schoolwork, conducting business or having telemedicine appointments. Because of this, we need to ensure faster and more reliable internet access to those areas of the county that do not currently have adequate service.” 

The funding is part of a total of $204.1 million in grants for 53 projects approved by the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority on Thursday. The $4.2 million approved for Franklin County was awarded to Zito West Holding, LLC to assist in ongoing broadband deployment.

The program funding, which comes from the American Rescue Plan Act, may only be used to cover costs associated with the installation or acquisition of middle-mile and last-mile high-speed broadband infrastructure. This includes data-gathering; feasibility studies; community engagement and public feedback processes; repair, rehabilitation, construction, improvement, and acquisition of real property, equipment and facilities; and administrative costs.

The authority was created under Act 96 of 2021 to serve as a single point of contact for parties interested in building out the state’s broadband infrastructure and services.