ND gets $130M, MT $628M in federal grants to improve rural internet availability

Published: Jul. 2, 2023 at 8:47 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 3, 2023 at 8:31 AM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Being able to connect to the internet has become essential to everyday life.

In rural parts of the country, access is difficult, which is why states are receiving federal grants to improve availability.

This week, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced billions of dollars from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act would be used to help providers expand services.

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the Broadband Equity Access and Deployment Program would bring internet access to many across the country.

“We will provide funding for them to lay fiber in places that are expensive, you know, in rural America, in mountainous America. But we expect them to then provide the internet, high quality, low cost for every American,” said Raimondo.

Through the program, Montana will receive more than $628 million. It is expected to cover more than 100,000 locations across the state.

Meanwhile, North Dakota will get more than $130 million.

“These funds present a new opportunity to provide a high level of access and opportunity to several of our more rural areas,” said North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer.

“I’m proud to have secured this funding for Montana that will create good paying jobs and ensure that Montana small businesses are able to compete in the 21st Century,” said Montana Senator Jon Tester.