PHOENIX — The Arizona Commerce Authority announced today grant applications are now being accepted for broadband enhancement in rural Arizona communities. The Arizona Rural Broadband Development Grant will be used to support planning and deployment, enabling Arizona communities to more easily access broadband services.
The $3 million in funding was requested by Governor Doug Ducey and approved by the Arizona State Legislature for the fiscal year 2020 budget.
“High speed internet is essential for accelerating economic development, enhancing education, strengthening health care and improving public safety in every part of Arizona,” said Governor Ducey. “Arizona’s investment in these grants will create opportunities for rural communities to jumpstart their access to fast, reliable internet.”
“In this digital age, connectivity is crucial for economic growth,” said Sandra Watson, President & CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority. “This grant will help rural Arizona communities increase their competitiveness and create new opportunities for their residents.”
Eligible applicants are Arizona cities and towns with a population of fewer than 150,000 that are not part of a larger contiguous metro area; Arizona counties with a population of fewer than 750,000; federally-based Indian tribes located in Arizona; established non-profit enterprises focused on economic development in Arizona; and for-profit enterprises with a minimum of five years operating history in the telecommunications industry.
The grants will be allocated in two separate categories: those for projects to immediately build broadband infrastructure, with a maximum award of $1,000,000 per project; and grants to help communities develop broadband plans. The maximum award for this grant is $50,000 per project.
Applications must be submitted by October 28th, 2019. Grant awards will be announced on December 19th, 2019.
For application details, please visit the Arizona Commerce Authority’s broadband website.