U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue Thursday announced the availability of a second round of $550 million in United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Reconnect Pilot Program funding appropriated by Congress. The application window for this round of funding is set to open January 31, 2020.
“This second round of ReConnect funding will help USDA be an even stronger partner in closing the digital divide in America’s rural communities,” Perdue said.
“Our core mission at USDA is to increase rural prosperity through boosting economic opportunity in rural America. We know that rural communities need robust, modern infrastructure to thrive, and that includes having access to broadband e-Connectivity.”
USDA will make available up to $200 million for grants, up to $200 million for 50/50 grant/loan combinations, and up to $200 million for low-interest loans. The application window for this round of funding will open January 31, 2020. Applications for all funding products will be accepted in the same application window, which will close no later than March 16, 2020.
Perdue made the announcement alongside Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds while congratulating the Farmers Mutual Telephone Company of Stanton, Iowa, for receiving $6.4 million in first-round Reconnect Pilot Program funding to connect 477 households, 35 farms and 21 businesses in Montgomery and Page counties.
“Iowa is home to creative entrepreneurs who are driving technological innovation across the heartland. By leveraging local, state and federal resources, we are investing like never before in broadband connectivity and sparking revitalization across rural Iowa,” said Gov. Reynolds.
December 17, 2019
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