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Biden-Harris Administration invests $4.4 Million in High-Speed Internet to Connect People in Iron and Washington Counties

Djinni Yancey
Salt Lake City
Release Date

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, June 12, 2023 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) State Director Michele Weaver, today announced $4.4 million in grants and loans to connect rural residents, farmers and business owners in Iron & Washington Counties to reliable, affordable high-speed internet. Connecting all communities across the United States to high-speed internet is a central part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda to rebuild our economy from the bottom up and middle out by rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, which is driving over $470 billion in private sector manufacturing investments and creating good-paying jobs.

“High-speed internet is key to prosperity for people who live and work in rural communities.” Weaver said. “Thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, rural communities are able to connect with new and innovative ideas, expand educational opportunities and access vital healthcare.”

Under the President’s Investing in America agenda, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law includes $65 billion to connect everyone to high-speed internet through the Internet for All initiative. USDA is connecting more people to high-speed internet in this fourth funding round of the ReConnect Program. Since the beginning of the Biden-Harris Administration, the Department has invested in 142 ReConnect projects nationally that will bring high-speed internet access to 314,000 rural Americans.

In Utah, Beehive Telephone Company is receiving a ReConnect Program loan and grant combination in the amount of $4.4 Million to deploy a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network, connecting 136 people and five farms in Iron and Washington counties in Utah, to high-speed internet.

Applicants to ReConnect Program funding must serve a rural area that lacks access to service at speeds of 100 megabits per second (Mbps) download and 20 Mbps upload. Applicants must also commit to building facilities capable of providing high-speed internet service with speeds of 100 Mbps (download and upload) to every location in the proposed service area. Additionally, to ensure that rural households that need internet service can afford it, all awardees will be required to apply to participate in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The ACP offers a discount of up to $30 per month towards internet service to qualifying low-income households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal Lands.

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. To learn more about investment resources for rural areas, visit http://www.rd.usda.gov/ut