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FCC Encouraging Broadband Companies to Expand to Rural Areas

March 05, 2018 - 8:55 am

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - The FCC is trying to convince broadband companies that serve Missouri to expand into more rural areas.


Commission spokesman Mark Wigfield says companies nationwide will compete for 2 billion dollars in subsidies to defray the high cost of providing high speed internet in remote areas. Missouri has about 105 thousand homes and businesses that are unserved, the most in the country.

"Missouri could actually wind up getting quite a large benefit from this auction if the carriers step forward and bid for what we're hoping they will,"he says. 

Wigfield says they made a similar offer to bigger companies in 2015.

"Now, as we're trying to fill in the gaps where the big carriers either A) didn't cover, or B) the locations were so costly to serve they were outside of the parameter of that program. That's what this auction is doing, it's saying 'ok, we made the offer to the big guys, now this open to anybody'," he says. 

Companies have until the end of the month to apply for the "reverse auction," where companies compete through bids. That auction happens July 24th.