USDA announces another round of rural broadband funding through its Community Connect program. Go here for the rules for this round.
In its announcement the department notes:
In addition to Community Connect grants, USDA Rural Development provides loans and loan guarantees to help finance the construction of rural broadband networks. For example, USDA Rural Development awarded a Community Connect grant to the Texas County Rural Area Informational Network (TRAIN) to install and operate a Fiber-to-the-Home network in Raymondville, Texas. The grants helped fund a Community Center called the Public Access Community Room. TRAIN also is providing broadband service to community residents and businesses.
Since its inception, the Community Connect program has funded 229 projects with USDA investments of $122 million. In 2012, USDA assistance led to improved broadband service nationwide for nearly 65,000 rural households, businesses, and community institutions – such as libraries, schools and first responders.