WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) have released updated broadband coverage maps in response to efforts from U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV).

These broadband coverage maps help determine how funding to expand and improve broadband coverage is allocated. However, the maps that were being used were out of date.

“After years of pushing the FCC to update their incorrect broadband coverage maps, the day is finally here. I am pleased the FCC has taken our feedback – including over 2,400 speed tests from West Virginians that prove their maps are incorrect – to update these coverage maps and ensure everyone has a voice in this process,” said Senator Manchin. “I fought to ensure that anyone can challenge the accuracy of these coverage maps, and I encourage every West Virginian to check their coverage on the FCC’s updated map and submit a challenge if it is wrong before Jan. 13. Thanks to my provision in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, these updated maps will provide the basis for billions of dollars in infrastructure funding to ensure every American and West Virginian gets reliable, affordable broadband access, but they will only be as accurate as the input they receive from states, communities, and consumers.”

Through the Broadband DATA Act, West Virginians can review these new FCC map to ensure that they are accurate. Those who are curious will be able to see “whether they have broadband coverage at their address, who it is served by, and by what type of technology is being used,” according to a release from Senator Manchin.

West Virginians who encounter an inaccuracy on the draft map can submit a challenge. Challenges should be submitted by January 13, 2023 to give the FCC time to make the necessary changes. The final map will be used to help decide how billions of dollars in broadband funding included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law gets spent.

The $42.45 billion Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment program within the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will allocate funding based on each state’s “proportion of unserved areas based on the new maps” by June 30.

“These maps, which I have long advocated and also provided funds for, will ultimately play a critical role in our efforts to bridge the digital divide, which is why I will be continuing to work with the FCC to see that West Virginians are accurately represented on these maps,” Senator Capito said in a series of posts on Twitter. “In the meantime, please visit the FCC’s map page to make sure your address is accurately represented.”

To learn more about how to submit a challenge, visit fcc.gov/BroadbandData/consumers.

The updated maps can be found here.