CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — Concerns over broadband coverage in West Virginia are a concern for the state’s congressional leaders. On Friday, Oct. 16, 2020 U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin announced he submitted more than 2,000 broadband speed tests to the Federal Communication Commission (FCC).
Sen. Manchin challenged West Virginians in June to submit these tests before the end of 2020. He said it proves the FCC’s broadband coverage maps are wrong. The goal is to fix the maps before the $20 billion Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) is distributed incorrectly.
“With more than two months left in 2020, West Virginians have met and exceeded the goal I set earlier this year to submit 2,000 speed tests to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. I am impressed by their dedication and persistence in proving the FCC’s maps wrong and it is a testament to their efforts to improve broadband coverage for their families, friends, and neighbors in West Virginia. Last week, Chairman Pai agreed to update the maps before the $9 billion 5G Fund for Rural America is distributed, but that’s only one piece of the pie. The FCC is planning to finalize $16 billion in RDOF funding at the end of this month using their incorrect maps, shutting much of West Virginia out of the competition for this funding. It’s just plain wrong, and over 2,000 West Virginians have proven it. I won’t stop submitting West Virginians’ tests until the FCC agrees to use the updated maps to distribute RDOF and commits to creating a user-friendly public feedback system just like they are required to do under law. This fight is far from over, and I need West Virginians to please help me fight for better broadband for the Mountain State by submitting a speed test at https://www.manchin.senate.gov/speedtest.”U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV)