STATEHOUSE (Sept. 8, 2020) — Three local rural broadband projects were recently awarded funding through the second round of the Next Level Connections Broadband Grant Program, said State Sen. Andy Zay (R-Huntington).
Mercury Wireless is awarded funding for a project that will connect 130 households and five businesses in portions of Allen, DeKalb and Whitley Counties. The requested grant amount is $110,040, with a local match of $348,460, for a total project cost of $458,500.
Eastern Indiana Wifi is awarded two grants. The first will serve 12 households and one anchor institution in eastern Grant County. The requested grant amount is $31,983, with a local match of $8,502 for a total project cost of $40,485.
The second grant will serve 103 households and 28 businesses in Monroe and Jefferson Townships in Grant County. The requested grant amount is $251,756, with a local match of $66,922, for a total project cost of $318,678.
"This a great next step toward investing in Indiana's future, but there's more we should do," Zay said. "The COVID-19 shutdown significantly exposed rural Indiana to the essential need for connectivity when everything from schools to businesses went virtual. Indiana needs to join the 18 states investing CARES Act Relief funds in broadband. This investment would not only show a commitment to Hoosiers today, but would also meet the needs of the economic demands of tomorrow."
The $100 million Next Level Broadband Grant Program is the largest single state investment in broadband. In total, rounds one and two of the program have awarded more than $79 million for broadband infrastructure for more than 21,900 homes and commercial locations in 41 counties.
A high-resolution photo of State Sen. Zay is available by clicking here.