Will $19.4 million really help improve broadband access throughout Minnesota? We’re about to find out.
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) awarded grants to 17 different high-speed Internet projects in the state last week. The initiatives range from general connectivity enhancements for underserved areas to broadband uses for health care, agriculture and other industries.
The grants derive from the DEED’s Border-to-Border Development Grant Program. Each grant provides up to 50 percent of the needed funding for a connectivity project. Communities and their partners are responsible for the other half. The Minnesota Legislature originally approved $20 million for the program. The remaining $600,000 is earmarked for administrative costs associated with the effort.