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ICYMI: Grafton County moves toward universal broadband coverage with $3.8 million in ARPA funds

In case you missed it, NH Bulletin reported today that through the American Rescue Plan, President Biden and our federal delegation secured $3.8 million toward universal broadband coverage in all 39 towns in Grafton County.

While Democrats in Washington were delivering for Granite Staters by fighting for the American Rescue Plan, Governor Sununu said he would have voted “no,” denying New Hampshire the billions of dollars in relief that this historic legislation brought. Key Excerpts:

  • Grafton County is aiming to reach universal broadband coverage, and last week the county’s executive committee approved $3.8 million in spending toward closing the gap.

  • The money – which comes from federal dollars through the American Rescue Plan Act – will fund what’s called final engineering for broadband plans in all 39 towns.

  • Final engineering involves a detailed on-the-ground study to get a project ready for construction: engineers drive the roads where wires will be strung, identify the specific poles that will be used, apply for permits where needed, and draft a final design complete with the total building cost. And the town administrator who has been leading the effort hopes it will clear the way for additional federal funding.

  • “When this work is done in November, the entire county could be built (starting) Nov. 2 because we’ll know exactly where it’s going to go, how much it’s going to cost, whose permission we need. Everything is just ready to go,” said Bristol Town Administrator Nik Coates, who has been pushing regional broadband efforts through the Grafton County Broadband Committee.

Read the full article here.

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