Ward Announces Investment to Improve Access to High-Speed Internet in Blair County

HARRISBURG – Sen. Judy Ward (R-30) announced today that Blair County is being awarded more than $1.8 million to increase access to reliable, high-speed internet by the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority (PBDA). Blair County will also receive portions of additional grants that have been awarded to several other counties in the region collectively.

“The ability to access high-speed broadband is for more than just entertainment,” Ward said.  “Services that our communities rely on every day, like EMS, police, and fire, depend on the efficient and reliable broadband.  Ensuring this access through grant projects like these goes a long way to keeping our communities safe and improving their quality of life.”

Made feasible by the federally funded Broadband Infrastructure Program, a total of $200 million in competitive grants was awarded for projects across the state lacking 25/3 Mbps internet service.

In an effort to ensure transparency and efficiency, the PBDA mandates quarterly and annual progress reports from grantees, accompanied by comprehensive guidance on state and federal requirements and technical support. All funds must be utilized by Dec. 31, 2026. Grantees will be held accountable for the prudent expenditure of awarded funds. The PBDA has the ability to claw back any unused or misused funds.

This inaugural round of grants represents a significant milestone in the PBDA’s broader initiative to close the digital divide since the General Assembly established the PBDA in 2021.

Residents can follow Ward on Facebook at Facebook.com/SenJudyWard and Twitter @SenatorJWard for news about legislation and the 30th Senate District. Contact information for her district offices and other information can be found on her website at SenatorJudyWard.com, and constituents also can sign up for her e-newsletter at SenatorJudyWard.com/enewsletters.

Media Contact: Nathan Akers

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