The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved plans for an ‘immediate infusion’ of USD64 million to help with the restoration of communications networks in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands that were destroyed during the 2017 hurricane season. However, the bulk of the proposed funding – almost USD900 million in medium and long-term support – remains subject to approval.
As such, the FCC is now soliciting public comment on funding for its proposed ‘Uniendo a Puerto Rico Fund’ (‘Bringing Puerto Rico Together Fund’) and ‘Connect USVI Fund’ projects. If approved, USD444.5 million will be allocated to Puerto Rico for the expansion of fixed broadband connectivity, with a further USD186.5 million earmarked for the USVI.
The watchdog is also seeking comment on its proposal to allocate approximately USD259 million in medium-term funding for the expansion of 4G LTE connectivity in the two unincorporated territories.