Western Governors continue advocacy to expand the Rural eConnectivity Program

Western Governors provided comments to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) on the third Rural eConnectivity Program Funding Opportunity Announcement. The letter of Jan. 27, signed by WGA Chair, Idaho Gov. Brad Little, and WGA Vice Chair, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, conveyed the Governors’ appreciation for the Agency’s responsiveness to previous recommendations on the issue but reiterated concerns about the program’s requirement that rendered those using satellite service ineligible for the ReConnect Program. The Governors also urged the Agency to significantly increase the definition of sufficient broadband from 25/3 Mbps to 100/20 Mbps, which “will more accurately reflect modern innovations and bandwidth demands.”  Additional recommendations include allocating a portion of their available funding to support projects on tribal lands and that the RUS evaluate the burden a financial match places on rural communities looking to take part in the program. Read, download the letter

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