Lindsey Graham announces $121 M in rural broadband funding for South Carolina

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Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., denounces a report by the Justice Department’s internal watchdog that concluded the FBI was justified in opening its investigation into ties between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia and did not act with political bias, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, Dec. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

COLUMBIA, SC (WBTW) – Senator Lindsey Graham (R) Wednesday announced the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will award $121 million in federal funding to expand rural broadband in South Carolina. The funding will serve 108,833 unserved homes and businesses across the state.

In August, Graham introduced the Governors’ Broadband Development Fund with Senators Tim Scott (R) to support deployment of advanced technologies in areas where there is greatest need. According to the FCC, about 21 million Americans do not have access to 25/3 mbps internet, which is the FCC’s standard for high-speed broadband. Of that 21 million, 16 million live in rural areas, while 5 million live in urban areas.

“This is very good news for South Carolina,” Graham said. “While it doesn’t solve the problem completely, it is another positive step in the right direction. There are places in South Carolina you might as well be on the moon when it comes to getting high-speed internet service. All South Carolinians should be able to utilize the educational, telehealth, and business benefits of accessible and affordable broadband.”

“This funding is critical for expanding broadband access in South Carolina and drastically improves access in rural and underserved areas,” Graham continued. “I’m thankful to the Trump administration for prioritizing this critical expansion when we need it the most.”  

Funding will be provided to CCO Holdings, Horry Telephone Cooperative, NRTC Phase I RDOF Consortium, Palmetto Telephone Communications, Rural Electric Cooperative Consortium, Sandhill Telephone Cooperative, Space Exploration Technologies Corp, WC Fiber, and Windstream Services to provide additional broadband to South Carolina customers who currently lack access to broadband.

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