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Deadline Extended for Rural Broadband Funding

Monday February 11th, 2019
Townships in rural areas that lack high-speed broadband can apply for funding through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural eConnectivity Pilot Program (ReConnect). The deadline for applications has been pushed back to at least May 31, 2019. New specific deadlines for ReConnect Program grants, loans, and grant-loan combination applications will be posted in the Federal Register in late February.
 
Telecommunications companies, rural electric cooperatives and utilities, internet service providers, and municipalities may apply for funding through the ReConnect Program to connect rural areas that currently have insufficient broadband service. USDA is making available about $200 million for grants, $200 million for low-interest loans, and $200 million for loan and grant combinations.
 
Funds will be awarded to projects that have a financially-sustainable business model to bring high-speed broadband to rural homes, businesses, farms, ranches, and community facilities, such as first responders, healthcare sites, and schools.
 
USDA is hosting a webinar with general information about the ReConnect program and guidance from experts for potential applicants. The webinar is open to the public and interested parties. It will be held February 13 at 2 p.m.
 
For more information about the ReConnect program, visit the ReConnect webpage