The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) announced the first round of Border-to-Border broadband improvement grants for the underserved communities in Minnesota. Three of those grants will be helping communities in Wright County.
Wright County has earmarked a considerable portion of its American Rescue Plan (ARP) allocation to assist unserved and underserved communities access high-speed internet, which has become essential to day-to-day life. The three projects that were approved were a Charter/Spectrum project for the City of Delano and Chatham, Franklin, Marysville, Rockford and Woodland Townships, a Charter/Spectrum project for the City of St. Michael and Rockford Township, and a Meeker Co-op project in the Lake Collinwood area.
Wright County pledged approximately $320,000 in local match funds to strengthen the applications. Prior to the Border-to-Border grants being announced, Wright County has committed $1.925 million in ARP funds for broadband projects that have impacted 1,645 households in the county.
DEED also is planning to start a second round of project funding before the end of the year. To see the full list projects and where in the state they were awarded, click here: https://mn.gov/deed/programs-services/broadband/grant-program/. To see projects previously funded in Wright County, click here: https://www.co.wright.mn.us/1017/Broadband-Committee