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Wyoming Works to Expand Broadband, Apply for USDA Funding

Cheyenne, Wy. (March 6, 2019) - Across the country families and communities are lacking access to the same opportunities many of us enjoy simply because they are not connected to broadband (high-speed internet).  Right now, there is an opportunity for communities and states to close that Digital Divide.

Wyoming is one of the nation's most rural states. That can pose unique challenges for expanding access, but state officials are not daunted. They 're working to meet upcoming deadlines for the ReConnect Program which will dole out $600 million in federal loans and grants this year specially to expand rural broadband access.

According to an article in the the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, Russ Elliott, manager of the Wyoming State Broadband Program, said state officials are working hard to gather data in the state’s most rural areas.

Elliott and others are using to establish a comprehensive, navigable database of Wyoming’s existing internet infrastructure, service providers and internet speeds.  They will also gather information from resident via mailings.

“The areas that are less served or not served by providers are very hard economic models to make work with the small populations,” Elliott told the Wyoming Tribune Eagle. “Hence the need for federal or state assistance to make it possible for providers to be able to invest in those areas.”