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Broadband funding to be dispersed

Huntingdon County Commissioners approved items that start the process of bringing more broadband internet to the county and beyond at their weekly meeting Tuesday morning.

This is part of a $20 million grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) that will allow for the construction of 10 new towers and retrofitting of nine existing towers in the county as well as allow for more towers in Bedford, Fulton, Mifflin, Juniata, and Franklin counties.

The first thing that was approved was to allow for tower ownership to be with Upward Broadband and Ambassador Towers, both of Paradise.

“They were the lead applicant for broadband services for Huntingdon, Bedford, Fulton, Franklin, Mifflin, and Juniata counties,” said commissioner and chair Mark Sather.

The second thing that was approved was the NTIA award to Upward Broadband so they could start the process of constructing a total of 30 new towers and retrofitting 16 existing towers in the counties.

Commissioner Jeff Thomas explained that Upward Broadband submitted a request for proposal to Alleghenies Broadband Inc. earlier in the process.

“It took a lot of work to get to this point,” said Sather.

While specific tower locations in the counties were not discussed, some of the towers will be constructed in areas that will benefit not only Huntingdon County but the surrounding counties.

“These towers will serve those who are underserved or unserved with broadband internet,” said Sather.

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