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Area internet providers receive broadband grants

MONTGOMERY — Three internet providers will share nearly $8 million in grants to expanding high-speed internet services in North Alabama.

The three latest grants, totaling $7.86 million, were awarded from funds provided by the Alabama Legislature, will serve areas in Blount, Cullman, Marshall and Morgan counties.

“Alabama continues to make steady strides in expanding the reach of high-speed internet services to all Alabamians,” Gov. Kay Ivey said. “I appreciate the commitment of the Alabama Legislature in providing this much-needed funding that will enhance local education, improve the delivery of critical public safety services, and grow business opportunity.”

The expansion projects will make broadband service accessible for more than 6,700 households, businesses and community anchors. Community anchors include schools, fire and police departments, libraries and other public buildings. Households and businesses must subscribe to paid service to receive broadband. Broadband providers only supply the access to high-speed internet, but households and businesses must still pay for connecting to the service.

The expansion will also provide additional links to make it more feasible to supply broadband service within those areas.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs administers the Alabama Broadband Accessibility Fund grants from state government funds allocated by the Legislature. Funds are issued through ADECA’s Alabama Digital Expansion Division, which was created by legislation signed by Ivey in 2021 to focus on broadband expansion in Alabama.

“ADECA is pleased to be on board with a program that is resulting in life-changing improvements for so many Alabamians,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “We are appreciative of Gov. Ivey’s confidence in our department to enable us to participate in this program that has historical ramifications.”

Grants awarded and project areas are:

  • Spectrum Southeast LLC – $3.84 million to provide broadband access for 1,435 households, businesses and community anchors in parts of Marshall and Blount counties including areas in or around the town of Susan Moore and the McClarty community.
  • Spectrum Southeast LLC– $1.84 million to provide broadband access for 3,610 households, businesses and community anchors in or around the Blount County towns of County Line, Hayden and Locust Fork.
  • Brindlee Mountain LLC (GoNetSpeed) – $2.18 million to provide broadband access to 1,708 households and businesses in parts of Blount, Cullman, Marshall and Morgan counties to includes part of the town of Arab and the communities of Hopewell, Union Grove, Joppa and West Point.

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