Glad you asked. High infrastructure costs have discouraged Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from expanding into many rural areas, leaving pockets of unserved or underserved residents. This came into sharp focus during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tuolumne County, like other areas in the country, suddenly had areas where parents, kids and seniors needed high-speed internet but couldn't get it.
The state and federal governments identified these problems and began funding broadband infrastructure in rural areas. Funding was included in COVID-19 relief legislation and, more recently, in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. This funding is primarily allocated to local governments through the state based on the number of residents and businesses with available service speeds of less than 25 Mbps. But that need is consistently under-reported by ISPs and each mistake could mean a loss of up to $4,200 in grant funding.
The County needs your input to prove where who needs service. You can help by checking your service or by testing your mobile service with the FCC Speed Test app so the County can work with the FCC to correct the data.