Missouri Broadband Office joins Pemiscot Dunklin Fiber for grant award announcement
GOBLER, MO (Edited News Release/KAIT) - On Friday, April 14, representatives with the State of Missouri Broadband Office joined Pemiscot Dunklin Fiber (PD Fiber), Pemiscot Dunklin Electric Cooperative, county commissioners, and local leaders from across the bootheel to announce a grant award of just over $4 million to bring high-speed fiber broadband to unserved and underserved areas in Northern Dunklin County and Southeastern Butler County in Southeast Missouri.
PD Fiber provides fiber-to-the-home broadband internet service and is a subsidiary of Pemiscot Dunklin Electric Cooperative.
The Cooperative serves Pemiscot, Dunklin, and southern New Madrid counties, where broadband service has been built over the past five years.
The State of Missouri Broadband Office announced that PD Fiber was awarded $2,234,017.42 in Northern Dunklin County and $1,786,333.73 in Southeastern Butler County.
These funds will provide broadband service to approximately 850 unserved or underserved households, businesses, and community buildings with a minimum of 100mbps speed.
“These projects stood out as exactly the kind of projects our program was looking to fund.
PD Fiber was able to demonstrate a high level of local support and overwhelming evidence in the application that it should be funded.” – Jeff Suaerer, MO Broadband Office.
Pemiscot Dunklin Board of Directors President Justin Rone thanked Governor Parson, the Department of Economic Development, and our state and federal legislators.
“We’re special in Missouri in how much focus the state has directed toward broadband development in rural areas.
We have one of the largest broadband teams in the nation serving the people of Missouri, and that’s direction from the Governor’s Office, and that’s direction from our state legislators as well.”
In January, the Department of Economic Development (DED), announced that it had awarded a total of $261 million through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program to 60 recipients for projects that will expand and improve internet access statewide.
Projects receiving funds are expected to create more than 55,000 connections in locations that previously lacked adequate internet access.
The ARPA Broadband Infrastructure Grant Program, administered by DED’s Office of Broadband Development, was launched in August 2022 to invest in broadband expansion.
The program awarded competitive grants to a wide range of applicants, including traditional internet providers as well as electric and telephone cooperatives.
The program prioritized unserved and underserved areas.
Funds will be used to build new connections that will deliver symmetrical speeds of 100 Mbps upload / 100 Mbps download or greater.
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