CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WBOY) — The Federal Communications Commission recently released a new National Broadband Map, which is a record of broadband availability at the address level.
The map will also help calculate how funds are allocated for broadband in West Virginia. If the map is inaccurate, West Virginia could receive less funding for expansion, since unserved areas will receive more, according to the West Virginia Development Office.
All West Virginia addresses should be listed on the map; that’s where you can help. Check that your address is on the list by following these steps, according to the FCC.
How to Find Your Address:
- Visit https://broadbandmap.fcc.gov/home.
- Using the search bar, type in the address you wish to review. The map should automatically zoom to your location.
- After finding your location, a side-panel on the right-hand side of the screen will populate location and service information.
- If your location is missing, ensure to select the building footprint or space of your location to submit a Location Challenge.
How to Submit a Location Challenge to the FCC:
- After searching a location, select the building footprint or space to where the point location layer is missing.
- Once the location is found, select “Challenge Location.”
- You will be required to fill out a form regarding information about your location.
- After a challenge is submitted, you will receive a confirmation email informing you that it has been received by the FCC.
- If a location is available on the map that includes inaccurate information, navigate to “Location Challenge” in the side-panel to complete the form.
If your address is listed with available broadband, but that is incorrect, you can submit an Availability Challenge to the FCC:
- After searching a location, select “Availability Challenge” in the side-panel.
- Select the provider (ISP) you wish to challenge.
- Complete the form to dispute the providers claim on service availability.
Unserved locations are those without reliable service of at least 25 Megabits per second (Mbps) download and 3 Mbps upload.
“It is vital that all West Virginia addresses are included in the FCC mapping data, especially when funding allocations will be based on the number of unserved locations in our State,” said Governor Jim Justice. “Every West Virginian and every West Virginia address should be counted, especially those that lack real broadband service.”
Gov. Justice also said that the West Virginia Office of Broadband has been directed to challenge data “whenever and wherever possible.” According to the West Virginia Department of Economic Development, the broadband office has already submitted 138,000 missing addresses in the state and is working to reconcile other discrepancies—the WV Office of Broadband does not include satellite service in its served category, but those areas are marked as served on the FCC map.
All challenges must be submitted by Jan. 13, 2023.