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Lake County News,California – Major state sponsored high speed internet project coming to Lake County in 2022

Lake County News,California - Major state sponsored high speed internet project coming to Lake County in 2022

LAKE COUNTY, Calif. — State Sen. Mike McGuire and Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry have announced a new high speed internet project in Lake County that’s set to begin next year, the first of several high speed internet projects that will receive funding here in Northern California.

The “Middle-Mile Project” involves high-capacity fiber lines carrying large amounts of data at higher speeds over long distances between local networks.

The project, which is No. 3 on the map above, will deploy 80 miles of high speed internet fiber in Lake County along Highways 20, 175 and 29.

Last week, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the state had identified 18 projects to begin work on an open-access middle-mile network that will provide missing infrastructure paths to bring broadband to all our communities.

McGuire and Aguiar-Curry have been focused on deploying high speed internet to some of the most unserved communities in Northern California, and working together as a team to secure desperately needed funding to connect communities throughout our region.

That led to McGuire and Aguiar-Curry’s announcement on Tuesday offering more details about the project.

In July, the state legislature passed a historic budget that will deploy America’s largest public high speed internet system.

The budget, $6 billion in total, will help bridge the digital divide and provide reliable and affordable internet access to millions of unserved and underserved residents.

The budget included $3.25 billion for the construction of a state-owned middle mile internet system that will expand high speed broadband access and prioritize unserved areas, unserved critical facilities and requires construction in geographically diverse urban and rural communities.

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“High speed internet is no longer a luxury, it has to be a right. The pandemic shined a spotlight on the massive disparities that exist in California’s small towns and rural communities when it comes to the lack of reliable internet activity. Hundreds of thousands of folks, here at home in Lake County and throughout the North Coast, are on the wrong side of the digital divide. This is about to change. This initial project in Lake County will be the first of several more that will be announced for the North Coast in the coming year and we couldn’t be more excited,” McGuire said.

“We have worked tirelessly for years to provide Internet for All in California. With the passage of my AB 14, the Internet for All Act, SB 4 (Gonzalez D-LA) and the generational investment in the budget under SB 156, we are beginning to see the fruits of our labor,” said Aguiar-Curry (D-Winters). “I could not be more proud that two of the recipients of the very first round of broadband projects are my constituents in Lake and Colusa counties!”

She thanked Gov. Newsom, the California Department of Technology and the Public Utilities Commission “for recognizing the opportunities and challenges in the Fourth Assembly District.”

More information about the Lake County middle mile broadband project will be available after the first of the year.

McGuire and Aguiar-Curry will host a virtual town hall early in 2022 to cover all details related to the project including construction timeline, scope and budget.

In addition to Lake County, the initial 18 projects — which represent a range of geographic locations and technical approaches — include work in Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Inyo, Kern, Orange and San Bernardino counties; the Central Coast; Coachella Valley; the Colusa area; Kern/San Luis Obispo area; Los Angeles and South Los Angeles; Oakland; Plumas area; Riverside/San Diego area; Siskiyou area; and West Fresno.

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