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Hancock County working to expand broadband access

Published: Jan. 26, 2022 at 5:58 PM EST
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Hancock County commissioners are consulting with Mission Broadband of Bangor in an effort to expand broadband access for residents and businesses.

In May, Hancock County received its first allotment of funding through the American Rescue Plan Act.

Since then, county commissioners have made the broadband initiative a top priority for allocation of those funds.

The work between Mission Broadband and Hancock County includes a county-wide survey that explores broadband access, cost, quality, and other data points to determine the level of need in each area.

“This problem that we look at nowadays is a ‘last mile’ problem. So, how do we get it from the internet to the town, and when you’re in the town as a service provider, how do you do the last mile? And, that’s where the gaps exist because there’s just not enough people per square mile, so to speak, to solve the problem from a revenue perspective, and that’s why you’re seeing lots of federal money being put towards broadband to try to solve that last mile gap,” said John Dougherty, Mission Broadband vice president and general manager.

“There’s a real desire by the commissioners to do right by the county, the citizens of Hancock. This is the best way we can develop an economy that can take care of other issues, whether it be homelessness, affordable housing, workforce investment. This just expands all those options,” said Scott Adkins, Hancock County county administrator.

For more information on Hancock County’s broadband initiative or to take the broadband initiative survey, visit hancockcountymaine.gov.

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