South Central Telephone Association, Inc. (Medicine Lodge), Madison Telephone, LLC (Madison), and J.B.N. Telephone Company, Inc. (Holton), have been awarded a combined $18,889,200 in federal Recovery Act funds for broadband Internet infrastructure projects in rural Kansas, officials announced today.
South Central Telephone Association was awarded an $871,200 grant for the Lake City & Sun City Rural Fiber-to-the-House (FTTH) Project, which will provide FTTH broadband service to all unserved establishments in the exchanges of Lake and Sun City. South Central Telephone Association will match the award with $3,550,800 in private investment.
Madison Telephone was awarded a $3,519,750 loan and $3,519,750 grant for the Madison-Lamont Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) Project, will provide FTTP last-mile broadband service to the telephone exchanges of Madison and Lamont. Madison Telephone will match the award with $763,634 in private investment.
J.B.N. Telephone Company has been awarded a $5,489,250 loan and $5,489,250 grant for the West Cluster Plus Barnes Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) Project, which will provide FTTP broadband service throughout seven western exchanges and the Barnes exchange. J.B.N. Telephone Company will match the award with $3,697,619 in private investment.
The three awards come from the Broadband Initiatives Program (BIP), which is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service as part of the Recovery Act. The Recovery Act is also funding the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP), which is administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications Information Administration. The Recovery Act has designated nearly $7.2 billion through BIP and BTOP for states to increase rural high-speed Internet access. BIP and BTOP awards are being announced on a rolling basis by the federal government.
Today’s announcement brings the total number of Kansas companies to receive federal funding to four, with the four awardees combining for nearly $120 million in grants and loans. In addition, Colorado-based Level 3 EON and Oklahoma-based Totah Communications earlier this month were awarded a combined $9,510,865 in funds for projects in south-central and southeast Kansas, bringing the total value of awards to Kansas projects to more than $129.6 million. (See table below.)
The awards mark the latest successes for the Connect Kansas initiative, which was unveiled last year by the Kansas Department of Commerce to map the state’s existing high-speed Internet availability, create a strategy for broadband infrastructure improvements and help Kansas organizations apply for federal awards. For details on the Connect Kansas initiative, visit www.ConnectKansas.org.