Governor Wolf: Pennsylvania’s Broadband Authority Ready to Deploy Minimum of $100 Million in Life-Changing Internet for All Funds

Bellefonte, PA – Governor Tom Wolf was joined by U.S. Department of Commerce Under Secretary Jed Kolko at Marion-Walker Elementary in Centre County today to highlight the Biden-Harris Administration’s $45 billion Internet for All Initiative and Pennsylvania’s readiness to manage more than $100 million in federal funds to deploy affordable, high-speed internet to Pennsylvanians.

“Lack of broadband hurts Pennsylvanians far and wide—urban and rural​. Our lack of consistent, affordable broadband keeps children from learning effectively, businesses from growing, limits job opportunities, and reduces medical care options,” said Governor Wolf. “But soon this will all be history—that we can read online—thanks to the Biden Administration’s continued commitment to improved infrastructure for our combined success.”

Last Friday, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced the launch of Internet for All to provide affordable, reliable, high-speed internet for everyone in America by the end of the decade. The $45 billion initiative is made of up three programs to build internet infrastructure, teach digital skills, and provide necessary technology to ensure that everyone—including communities of color, rural communities, and older Americans—has the access and skills needed to fully participate in today’s society.

“For more than 20 years, we’ve been talking about closing the digital divide in America. Now we finally have a chance to do it,” said Alan Davidson, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator. “Together, we can make sure that everyone in Pennsylvania has access to the affordable high-speed internet service they need to succeed in the 21st century economy. I’m grateful to Governor Wolf and all the community leaders working to make this dream a reality for Pennsylvanians.”

Pennsylvania will receive at least $100 million from the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment Program. Hundreds of millions in additional formula funding will be made based on the forthcoming coverage maps from the Federal Communications Commission. To prepare for this funding and ensure oversight and support for broadband deployment in Pennsylvania, Governor Wolf and Pennsylvania’s General Assembly worked across party lines to create the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority

Wolf Administration Highlights Investments In Manufacturing Industry During Tour Of High School Training Programs In Elk County

Saint Marys, PA – Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Acting Secretary Neil Weaver visited Saint Marys Area High School today in support of the Wolf Administration’s investments in the school’s manufacturing training programs. Acting Secretary Weaver was on hand to celebrate the student-run Dutch Manufacturing program, funded recently by a $200,000 Manufacturing PA Training-to-Career (MTTC) Grant, that is slated to begin in the 2022-23 school year.

“I’m proud that we can support the Dutch Manufacturing program,” said Acting Secretary Weaver. “With this program, students get hands-on experience in the manufacturing industry and will also build relationships with local companies – relationships that will hopefully lead to good jobs in the future.”

Acting Secretary Weaver visited other existing manufacturing training programs at the Elk County school, including Drafting and Design and Precision Machining, and participated in a press conference following the tour to highlight the new Dutch Manufacturing program.

The Dutch Manufacturing program will give qualifying students the opportunity to participate in a manufacturing enterprise that will make actual parts, deliver services and be a part of the supply chain for local manufacturers. Over the course of an academic school year, students will learn about and perform different job functions in manufacturing, develop essential skills, utilize advanced manufacturing technologies and establish relationships with area businesses. The program will engage a total of 210 students over the course of the grant period, from August 2022 to August 2024.

“Manufacturing in Saint Marys, Pennsylvania is critical to our local economy and is relevant on a global scale,” said Dr. Harley Ramsey, Superintendent, Saint Marys Area School District. “This funding will allow the St. Marys Area School District to create unique opportunities for our students to earn and learn in the manufacturing world, guaranteeing a strong future for our rural community.”

Governor Tom Wolf’s Manufacturing PA initiative was launched in October 2017, and since then has funded 73 projects and invested more than $16.1 million through the Manufacturing PA Training-to-Career Grant program.

Training-to-Career grants support projects that result in short-term work-readiness, job placement, or the advancement of manufacturing. The Manufacturing PA Training-to-Career Grant program works collaboratively with local manufacturers to identify and teach missing essential skills for entry level applicants seeking manufacturing employment, engage youth or those with barriers to career opportunities in manufacturing, and or advance capacity for local or regional manufacturers.