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Dec 12, 2023

Maine Connectivity Authority Awards More Than $36 Million To Expand Internet Access

The Maine Connectivity Authority (MCA) has awarded more than $36.6 million in grants to expand affordable, reliable, high-speed internet service to more than 24,000 homes and businesses in 45 communities across the state. The grants are part of the agency’s All-In programming, funded through the American Rescue Plan and designed to provide a mixture of solutions to address the expansion of last mile infrastructure for high-speed internet. MCA is announcing five Connect the Ready: Cohort 2 grant awards totaling $20.7 million. These awards will leverage almost $11 million in private and community investment, and connect nearly 6,500 homes and businesses across 27 communities in Maine. The Connect the Ready Program invests in community-informed public-private partnerships to build broadband infrastructure projects where internet service doesn’t exist or is inadequate. Additionally, MCA is announcing three Partnerships for Enabling Middle Mile (PEMM) grant awards totaling $15.9 million. These awards to three different internet service providers will leverage more than $14.2 million in private and community investment, and connect over 18,000 homes and businesses across 18 communities in Maine. The PEMM Program addresses large-scale, regional broadband needs by leveraging middle mile infrastructure and maximizing private and community financial contributions to enable last-mile connections. As of December 2023, the Maine Connectivity Authority has facilitated over $145 million in digital equity and infrastructure investments, enabling over 77,000 connections across the state and reducing the number of locations with no internet connection to less than 6% of the state.

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