FCC wants nearly $1 billion to revamp Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands communications networks

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai proposed on Tuesday directing $954 million toward restoring and expanding communications networks in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands heavily damaged during the 2017 hurricane season. 

Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission Ajit Pai speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Maryland, U.S., February 23, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

In September, 95 percent of cell sites were out of service in Puerto Rico and 75 percent in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Pai said the funds are aimed at providing additional short-term assistance for restoring communications networks and longer-term support for expanding broadband access throughout the islands.

Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Diane Craft