Commission gets funding to expand broadband connectivity

From staff reports

The Northwest Commission, a member of the Local Development District Association of Pennsylvania, received funding through support of the state legislature and the Wolf administration to use fixed wireless technology to expand broadband connectivity in rural Pennsylvania.

State Rep. Donna Oberlander (R-63rd) was instrumental in securing the funding for the pilot projects that will take place inside and outside her district.

State Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-65th) was among others who also were champions for the funding.

“Connectivity in rural areas makes it possible to live and work where you want to, not just where you have to,” said Jill Foys, executive director of the commission.

“Finding low-cost, efficient ways to connect our most rural areas is the key for moving our region forward,” she said.

The Northwest and North Central Planning Commissions, located in Oil City and Ridgway, respectively, will partner to complete five pilot projects in the counties of Clarion, Forest, Jefferson and Cameron.

Using existing and available infrastructure, when able, the project will be cost-effective and timely. A specific timeline is being constructed and rollout will take place in the coming months, Foys said.