Surfnet Pursues USDA Broadband Technical Assistance Grant of $250k
Surfnet Communications is on the verge of enhancing broadband accessibility in rural areas by pursuing the USDA Broadband Technical Assistance (BTA) Grant with an impressive grant size of $250,000.
The USDA BTA Grant program is a vital resource aimed at bridging the digital divide by providing financial support to eligible entities engaged in broadband technical assistance and training. Surfnet aims to contribute significantly to expanding and developing broadband cooperatives, therefore empowering underserved communities with improved connectivity.
This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for the grant is made possible through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), reflecting a significant commitment towards improving broadband infrastructure. Under the current FOA for FY 2023, a substantial pool of $20 million is available which will be divided into various funding categories.
Surfnet has a clear vision for utilizing these funds. They plan to target the Technical Assistance Recipients category, with a potential grant range of $50,000 to $250,000 then channel these funds into spearheading broadband technical assistance activities in underserved rural areas.
The communities that will benefit include Strawberry (Monterey County), Empire Grade and Zayante (Santa Cruz County), Branch (San Luis Obispo County), and Mt Bache (Santa Clara County). These communities have varying populations in sizes, median household incomes, and economic indicators.
Surfnet has already laid out its project work plan and objectives around three key goals. These include restructuring their accounting system, enhancing remote power supply management, and establishing a comprehensive emergency response plan. The $250,000 budget for the project is evenly allocated between accounting system restructuring and remote power supply management.
In conclusion, Surfnet Communications’ pursuit of the USDA Broadband Technical Assistance Grant represents a significant step towards narrowing the digital divide and providing essential connectivity to rural communities. Their well-thought-out plan and commitment to the aforementioned unserved and low-income areas promise to make a lasting positive impact on these communities’ well-being and development.