Dec. 1 (UPI) — The U.S. Treasury Department Thursday announced nearly $1 billion in American Rescue Plan high-speed internet funding for Utah, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota and Missouri.
“This funding will lay the foundation for the Biden-Harris Administration’s historic investments to increase access to high-speed internet and reduce internet bills for American households and businesses,” Deputy Treasury Sec. Wally Adeyemo said in a statement.
Adeyemo said the COVID-19 pandemic exposed the “stark inequity” in access to affordable and reliable high-speed internet in rural, tribal and other underrepresented communities.
According to the Treasury Department this funding will be used to connect more than 180,000 homes and businesses to affordable high-speed internet.
The Capital Projects Fund provides $10 billion to states, territories and tribal government to fund critical capital projects. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also includes funding for high-speed internet.
Each state’s plan under this funding requires service providers to participate in the Federal Communications Commission’s new Affordable Connectivity Plan. It provides high-speed internet discounts of up to $30 a month, $75 a month on tribal lands.
In addition, the Biden administration said it has secured commitments from 20 leading internet service providers to offer all ACP-eligible households high-speed internet for no more than $30 a month.
Utah will connect 3,080 homes and businesses using $10 million in government funding.
For Florida, the newly announced funding will provide $248 million to connect 48,400 households. Georgia will get $250 million helping to connect an estimated 70,000 households.
Iowa will use $152.2 million to provide high-speed internet to 18,972 households and businesses. Minnesota gets $44 million that it will use to fund two broadband projects — Minnesota’s Line Extension Program and the Low-Density Pilot Program.
Missouri gets $196.7 million which it estimates will connect 37,979 households and businesses currently lacking high-speed internet access.