© 2023 Maine Public | Registered 501(c)(3) EIN: 22-3171529
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Maine seeks input on how to spend $250M in federal broadband funds

Infrastructure Deal-Broadband-Explainer
Ted S. Warren
FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021, file photo, Carl Roath, left, a worker with the Mason County (Wash.) Public Utility District, pulls fiber optic cable off of a spool, as he works with a team to install broadband internet service to homes in a rural area surrounding Lake Christine near Belfair, Wash.

Maine has $250 million from the federal government to extend high-speed internet service to more of Maine. The Maine Connectivity Authority is launching a survey to help it figure out where to spend that money.

The authority's economic development director, Tanya Emery, says there could be several reasons why people lack good access: "Their town is simply not serviced, their road is not serviced, they have a particularly long driveway and there's one provider and that one provider has quoted them an enormous amount of money."

The information from the survey will help the authority create a five-year plan for spending the $250 million in federal money. In addition, some state funds are being deployed now to help reach more people in Maine with high-speed internet service.

Emery says the Maine Connectivity Authority will be collecting information from its survey over the next month so it can begin spending its federal dollars next year.