Vienna, VA, August 28, 2018 – The FCC on Tuesday revealed names of the winning bidders of its Connect America Fund Phase II (CAF-II) auction, which concluded last week and will dole out $1.488 billion to internet service providers to expand fixed internet coverage in rural areas.
The winners span a variety of different service provider types, with satellite providers, electric cooperatives and WISPs filling out those receiving the most support in auction funds.
Declaration Networks Group of Vienna, VA, won two awards totaling $6.8M for locations in Garrett County, Maryland and Washington State.
Overall 713,176 new locations will gain access to high-speed internet and auction winners must meet certain speed thresholds and buildout timeframe requirements.
Specifically, 53 percent of homes and businesses covered by support of the auction will have available download speeds of at least 100 Mbps, while 19 percent will have 1 Gbps service available. And 711,389 locations – all but 0.25 percent – will have at least 25 Mbps service available, according to the FCC.
Rules of the auction require providers to build out service to 40 percent of their assigned home and businesses in a state within three years, and that must increase by 20 percent each year after that, with 100 percent completion by the end of the sixth year.
“The successful conclusion of this first-of-its kind auction is great news for the residents of these rural communities, who will finally be able to share in the 21st-century digital opportunities that broadband provides,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai in a statement. “By tapping the mechanisms of the marketplace, the Phase II auction served as the most appropriate and cost-effective way to allocate funding for broadband in these unserved communities, bringing the highest-quality broadband services to the most consumers at the lowest cost to the ratepayer.”
For more info about the Connect America Fund (CAF), visit the FCC’s CAF page.