Cuomo Administration Proposes $1B Program To Expand Broadband Access In New York

The administration of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo today announced an ambitious broadband plan as part of its broader “2015 State of Opportunity Agenda.”

The plan calls for $500 million in state funding to broadband providers who chip in at least an equal amount of matching funds, bringing the program’s total size to more than $1 billion. They must also provide Internet speeds of at least 100 megabits per second. (25 Mbps will be the threshold in “the most remote unserved and underserved areas of the state.”)

“Access to high-speed internet is critical to ensuring that all New Yorkers can reach their full potential in today’s technology-driven world,” Cuomo said in the announcement. “We’re launching the largest state broadband investment in the nation in order to make that goal a reality. This is a truly bold undertaking that will improve the lives of New Yorkers in every corner of the State, and I am proud to make it a priority of our administration’s second term agenda.”

The New NY Broadband Program would be funded by money from the bank settlements. Cuomo has talked about the broadband fund before, but this looks like a more detailed plan, albeit one that would still need the approval of state lawmakers.