Regional Optical Communications (ROC) was formed by Region 1 and Region 4 Planning and Development councils, as an 11-county partnership. The partnership exists for the sole purpose of promoting Broadband throughout our rural region, which now consists of 19 counties.
The Pocahontas County Broadband Council was the first such County Broadband Council in the state. It’s mission serves to advocate, coordinate communication, and identify and pursue opportunities to build fast, reliable, affordable internet to every corner of the county where residents live and work.
In 2021, Governor Jim Justice unveiled a billion-dollar strategy to bring broadband availability to 200,000 more West Virginia homes and businesses.
Now, according to a June 7 announcement, the US Treasury Department named West Virginia as one of four states getting a combined $583 million from the $10 billion Coronavirus Capital Projects Fund (CPF), which Congress passed in March 2021 as part of the American Rescue Plan Act. The department designed its guidance to prioritize connecting families and businesses that had poor and inadequate service particularly those in rural and remote areas.
From local and regional to state and federal, the efforts and desire to make a difference is evident. The need for Broadband to operate and compete from the family farm to the larger corporations is recognized by all.
Now the question: If connecting families and businesses that have inadequate service particularly in rural and remote areas, is truly the priority of the Treasury, Pocahontas County should now be at the top of the list for substantial improvements to Broadband service.