Farrer residents have another month to ‘have a say’ on the design of the next round of the Coalition Mobile Black Spot Program (MBSP).

When the outcomes of Round 5 of the program were announced last month, a discussion paper was flagged to look at options for Round 5A, to test a range of new approaches to help deliver mobile coverage where it is needed the most.

According to local MP Sussan Ley there is $46 million on the table for Round 5A and a further $80 million committed for Round 6, so the Black Spot program has plenty more to deliver.

“In order to do this, it’s vital we receive feedback on proposed changes from the people it affects the most – rural Australia.”

The discussion paper proposes a series of changes to the eligibility guidelines for the program…

• Improve coverage in areas prone to natural disasters including bushfires;
• Improve coverage along major regional and remote transport corridors; and to
• Trial new technology solutions in areas where a smaller population has discouraged applications in previous rounds.

“The Coalition Government understands the importance of connectivity to my communities, and we want to get on with the job of building more phone towers to deliver that coverage”,
Ms Ley said.

Community input is being taken until June 19, 2020 via the Department of Communications.

The first five rounds of the MBSP have generated more than $830 million total investment, funding 1,229 new towers, with more than 800 of those already delivering improved coverage.