Wednesday, October 31, 2018

State Broadband Office Launches Broadband Grant Program

The GREAT Grant Program allows internet service providers and electric membership cooperatives to fund broadband expansion in rural communities.
Oct 31, 2018

Eric Boyette, secretary of the N.C. Department of Information Technology and state chief information officer, announced today the launch of the state’s new Growing Rural Economies with Access to Technology (GREAT) Grant Program. 

The GREAT Grant Program is a $10 million grant program authorized by the N.C. General Assembly and administered by NCDIT’s Broadband Infrastructure Office. The program allows internet service providers and electric membership cooperatives to compete for funding to lower financial barriers that prevent broadband expansion in rural communities. 

“We are excited about what this can do for Tier One counties in North Carolina,” said Secretary Boyette. “We expect to see some great ideas for meaningful broadband expansion in these areas. This is an important step toward ensuring that our children are equipped to complete homework assignments and that small business owners are poised for growth.”

The GREAT Grant Program was established by Session Law 2018-5. Eligible areas are census blocks or portions of census blocks in Tier One counties that lack access to a service providing a minimum of 10 Megabits per second download and 1 Megabit per second upload speeds. The state classifies the 40 most economically distressed counties in the state as Tier One counties.

To learn more, visit the GREAT Grant Program webpage.

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