New York State
Statewide Universal Broadband Initiative
$500 million program
The program’s goal is to enable New York State to provide universal broadband connectivity, and promote adoption for all citizens, businesses, and institutional users to their needs in the 21st century global economy.
In today’s connected, data-driven world, broadband is essential to both the public and private
sectors. In the public sector, broadband increases access to medical specialists in rural areas, allows more efficient management of the electric grid, and gives public safety officials faster and deeper access to critical data. In the private sector, broadband access forms the cornerstone of every business, connecting them to clients, suppliers, and distributors.
Working closely with the NYS Broadband Office, Tobin developed the strategy to leverage State-owned physical infrastructure, streamline the deployment process, and identify and utilize $500 million in additional New York State funding to effectively stimulate private sector investment in broadband.
First, by identifying existing state-owned physical infrastructure assets (e.g. fiber, towers, and rights-of-way such as the NYS Thruway, and state owned bridges) Tobin and the Broadband team created a coordinated master plan deployment process that achieved the following:
- Consistent regulations and expedited permitting
- Prompt resolution of deployment issues
- “Dig Once” policies
- Coordination/collaboration across sectors to leverage broadband assets
Secondly, by modeling the existing “state of play” and applying FCC and PSC data collection to New York State mapping, the Broadband initiative identified areas that lack access to adequate broadband service based on regional requirements and economic goals. The initiative was able to accurately:
- Identify areas eligible for current broadband funding programs (federal, state, private) and determine what technologies best serve the needs of specific underserved communities (i.e. wire line vs. wireless)
- Developed a reverse auction system to allocate funding subsidies (grants and loans) to close the financing gap, most cost-effectively deliver access
Return on Investment
Economic Benefits: As of today, broadband availability statewide at speeds of 25Mbps or less is 69% for residential customers in New York. Pursuant to recent studies, an initial increase of broadband deployment of 7% in NYS would generate:
- Total Annual Economic Impact - $9.9 Billion
- Jobs Created or Saved Annually – 147,884
- Direct Annual Income Growth from the Increase in Broadband – $6.8 Billion
- Average Annual Healthcare Costs Saved – $42.8M
Home – There are approximately 19.4 million New Yorkers.
- 1.1 million New Yorkers cannot get access to broadband at minimum speeds defined by the State (6 Mbps/1.5 Mbps), that are already out of date.
- 2.5 million New Yorkers cannot get access to broadband at 25 Mbps.
- 88% of the unserved are Upstate (everything outside of NYC and LI)
- 4.6 million New Yorkers cannot get access to broadband at 100 Mbps.
Business – There are approximately 362,000 businesses in NY.
- 4,000 businesses cannot get access to broadband at minimum speeds defined by the State (6 Mbps/1.5 Mbps), that are already out of date.
- 55,000 businesses cannot get access to broadband at 25 Mbps.
- 113,000 businesses cannot get access to broadband at 100 Mbps.
- NOTE: Economic development professionals identify 100Mbps as the minimum speed for business creation and growth of existing businesses.
School – There are 4,775 public schools in NY.
- 516 schools cannot get access to broadband at minimum speeds defined by the State (6 Mbps/1.5 Mbps), that are already out of date.
- 1,657 schools cannot get access to broadband at 25 Mbps.
- 2,390 schools cannot get access to broadband at 100 Mbps.
- President Obama and the FCC both agree that schools need at least 100Mbps today; and this figure increases to 1 gig (1000Mbps) by 2018.
- In South Korea, 100 percent of schools already benefit from ultrafast Internet connections.
1 Source: Connected Nation, Inc.: The Economic Impact of Stimulating Broadband Nationally.