Courthouse Journal Blogpost – July 17th, 2020
Broadband Infrastructure Grant Application Now Open
On July 13th, 2020 The Washington State Public Works Board announced they are now accepting applications for broadband infrastructure construction grants until September 9, 2020. Currently, $9.1 million is available for low-interest loans and $8.6 million for grants.
In a statement Board Chair Scott Hutsell said “The Public Works Board is excited to see the construction cycle for our seventh infrastructure system open, closing the digital divide is a priority for the state and the Board. This is a crucial first step in that process. We look forward to continuing to be a source for infrastructure funding, including broadband, long into the future. After all, infrastructure is the backbone of economic recovery.”
The Public Works Board Broadband Construction Grant and Loan program focuses on activities that provide broadband internet to unserved areas of the state. Eligible applicants can be cities, towns, counties, public port and special purpose districts, tribes, nonprofit organizations, and cooperative associations.
According to the Public Works website, there are certain funding limitations, including: $2 million per project loan/grant award limit with a 50% match and projects in financially distressed areas and Indian country may receive up to 90% of the total project cost for a total not to exceed $5 million.
For Questions regarding the program, please contact:
About the Public Works Board: The Legislature created the Public Works Board in partnership with local governments to assist in addressing infrastructure needs. They use a dedicated funding pool to offer low-interest financing in a revolving loan program. A citizens’ board of infrastructure representatives manage the program.
About the Statewide Broadband Account: The Statewide Broadband Account is funded through legislative appropriation, the proceeds of bond sales authorized by the legislature, repayment of loans, or any other lawful source.