Alabama Flag

The state of Alabama has awarded $53.5 million to Alabama Fiber Network to cover some of the costs for deploying a middle mile network deployment. Alabama Fiber Network is a coalition of electric and generation/transmission cooperatives in the state.

The award comes on top of a previous $128.8 million middle mile grant that the state gave the coalition earlier this year. At that time, the state awarded a total of $188 million for middle mile deployments, which went to a total of 11 entities.

In the funding round results announced this week, Alabama Fiber Network was the sole awardee.

The first round of funding earlier this year will go toward the first phase of the middle mile buildout. The funding awarded this week in the second round will go toward phase two of that buildout.

“This project will add approximately 1,095 miles of high-speed middle-mile broadband for our communities, and it will connect approximately 120 community anchors, like educational institutions, medical facilities, local government offices and police and fire departments to this service,” said Alabama Governor Kay Ivey in a prepared statement. “Just as important, it puts us closer in Alabama to ensuring that everyone has access to this fundamental service.”

The middle mile program is administered by the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA). Funding for the middle mile buildouts came through the federal American Rescue Plan Act.

Companies in the Alabama Fiber Network coalition include electric cooperatives Central Alabama Electric Cooperative, Coosa Valley Electric Cooperative, Covington Electric Cooperative, Cullman Electric Cooperative, Joe Wheeler Electric Membership Cooperative, North Alabama Electric Cooperative and Tombigbee Electric Cooperative, as well as the generation/transmission cooperative PowerSouth Energy Cooperative.

“This grant phase is another giant step in the long, but attainable process of providing high-speed internet to every corner of the state,” said ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell. “I commend the Alabama Fiber Network for this cooperative effort and their major role in this venture.

Additional information about Alabama broadband, including links to state funding resources, state specific Telecompetitor coverage, awards made and more, can be found on the Telecompetitor Broadband Nation webpage for the state.

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