The purpose of the Community Connect Program is to provide financial assistance in the form of grants to eligible applicants that will provide, on a “community-oriented connectivity” basis, broadband service that fosters economic growth and delivers enhanced educational, health care, and public safety benefits. The application window is currently open.
The ReConnect program is designed to bring internet service to parts of rural America that have been traditionally hard to reach by providing grants, loans, or grant/loan combinations to entities seeking to deploy broadband services in unserved or severely underserved regions.
Within the USDA ReConnect funding application, projects can be awarded as many as 20 State Activity Points. The Georgia Broadband Office is offering technical assistance to USDA applicants by providing the following:
To request a state certification letter to address whether state broadband funding was provided for your applications Proposed Funded Service Area (PFSA) please email firstname.lastname@example.org. A map of your projects PFSA should also be submitted with the request.
In ReConnect Round I, Georgia had 3 successful applicants:
- Ellijay Telephone Company received a $4.4 million grant to provide high-speed services to 2,159 households, 25 pre-subscribed businesses, two critical community facilities, an educational facility and 24 pre-subscribed farms in unserved regions of Gilmer County for a total project cost of $5.8 million.
- Darien Telephone Company received a $1 million grant to expand high-speed service to 257 households, 17 pre-subscribed businesses and a critical community facility in McIntosh County for a total project cost of $1.5 million.
- Pembroke Telephone Company received a $4 million combination grant-loan to build a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network to provide high-speed internet to 964 households, 20 pre-subscribed farms and 15 pre-subscribed businesses in Evans County.
In ReConnect Round II, Georgia supported 3 applications:
- DoveTel Communications received a $12.5 million grant to provide fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) services to 2,779 households, 121 farms, 15 businesses, four fire stations, and one elementary school in portions of Heard, Carroll, and Troup County for a total project cost of $16.7 million.