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West Virginia broadband council chairman blasts FCC report, says data isn’t correct


Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Numbers in a federal report about West Virginians who have access to broadband internet services are “not even close to being correct,” the chairman of the state’s broadband council said Thursday.

The Federal Communications Commission released the report last week. It claims, among other things, that seven West Virginia counties have 100-percent access to a fixed broadband connection.

The report could hurt West Virginia’s chances to get money to help improve internet speeds, said Rob Hinton, chairman of the West Virginia Broadband Enhancement Council, which oversees broadband expansion and access in the state.

The FCC’s 2018 Broadband Deployment Report says 82.2 percent of West Virginians have access to fixed, or non-mobile, broadband internet speeds.

The counties the report says has 100 percent fixed broadband access are Barbour, Gilmer, Harrison, Lewis, Marion, Randolph and Upshur. Other counties weren’t too far off from that, according to the report, with Braxton County at 99.9 percent and Monongalia County at 98 percent broadband access.

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