USDA accepts funding requests for ReConnect Rural Broadband pilot
-The Hagstrom Report
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue today announced that USDA is accepting online applications for funding through the new ReConnect Rural Broadband Pilot Program.
“These funds will enable the federal government to partner with the private sector and rural communities to build modern broadband infrastructure in areas with insufficient internet service,” USDA said.
“Insufficient service” is defined as connection speeds of less than 10 megabits per second download and 1 megabit per second upload.
In this first round of funding, USDA is making available at least $600 million in rural broadband projects, through $200 million in grants, $200 million in loan and grant combinations, and $200 million in low-interest loans.
The application deadlines for each of these funding packages are as follows:
▪ May 31, 2019, for projects seeking federal funds from the grants-only package;
▪ June 21, 2019, for projects seeking a combination of federal loan
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