ST. PAUL – Rep. Steve Green, R-Fosston, issued the following statement regarding Tuesday’s announcement from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development of 39 broadband grants totaling more than $26 million to bring broadband access to unserved and underserved parts of the state. Some grants leveraged funding from the Connect America Funding from the federal government, helping stretch funding from the state.
According to a press release from DEED, two projects in District 2B will receive grant funding: $1.3 million to bring access to 238 unserved or underserved households, businesses and community institutions in Bejou and surrounding Mahnomen County areas, and $802,620 to connect 835 of the same in Park Rapids. Big Fork and Side Lake locations also will see portions of the latter funding.
“Parts of our region have been left in the dust in terms of technology growth,” Green said. “This funding will help us catch up so that families and businesses are more able to keep up in today’s information age where reliable internet access is so important. Congratulations to the local groups who were successful in earning these grants.”
The Republican-led Legislature approved $20 million in grants for the Border-to-Border Broadband program during the 2017 legislative session.