Alabama expanding broadband internet statewide

SUMTER COUNTY, Ala. (WTOK) – All 67 counties across Alabama are receiving a helping hand as the state is gearing up to provide access to broadband internet.

“Here in the black belt, we’re suffering from that whereas broadband not only here in Sumter County has been a major problem but for all of our surrounding counties,” said Chairman of the Sumter County Commission, Marcus Campbell.

Alabama will make funds available to achieve full broadband statewide, over the next few years. Governor Kay Ivey, recently held a series of statewide meetings through a program organized by the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA).

“It was a great meeting Morene and her team presented some great information concerning the fact that Alabama will be receiving about $181 million through the course of 2024 – 2025 where internet service providers can apply for these fundings and provide services in areas. It might be fiber or other methods to make sure that every citizen in Sumter County who wants broadband will be able to have it. That’s our goal. That’s been a number one priority for us here in Sumter County as far as the commission,” said Campbell.

The Alabama Community Broadband Technical Assistance Program helps communities prepare for broadband deployment and digital opportunities.

Chairman of the Sumter County Commission, Marcus Campbell said Alabama Power and a team at the University of West Alabama have been working together to get connectivity to all of its citizens.

“We’re hoping that once the internet service providers do all that they need to do and see what’s available for them. Then we as a local commission here in Sumter County will sit down with them, and we want to make sure one is able to be afforded by any citizen that wants that connectivity in their home as well as in their businesses or wherever they might want to be connected to,” said Campbell.

Campbell said this expansion will be beneficial to everyone including students in the school system and improve economic growth in the county.

The Association of County Commissions of Alabama voted to make broadband a number 1 priority for the upcoming year.

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