NTIA has allocated $272M in BEAD funding to Maine.
Connect the Ready is a competitive grants program targeting public-private partnerships to design, fund, and build broadband infrastructure projects in eligible areas. The program will optimize broadband deployment to unserved locations and encourage projects that will expand universal broadband service throughout communities
Reach Me will optimize broadband deployment by incentivizing internet service providers (ISPs) to complete their existing networks by extending service to all unserved locations in their service areas. Reach Me Incentives fund line extensions to locations that the MCA has determined are most likely to be cost-effectively served by the expansion of existing networks.
The Jumpstart Connectivity Initiative will provide accelerated low-cost internet access to the least served areas of the state by trialing the deployment of wireless technology deployments. The program targets communities across five counties with a high concentration of unserved homes and businesses and where wired deployments are currently impractical. MCA will conduct a thorough and ongoing evaluation of the program and use the findings to identify wireless technologies that could potentially scale as a complementary component of the state’s overall connectivity strategy.
The Regional & Tribal Broadband Partners Program will help deploy, sustain and maximize the benefits of broadband infrastructure investment in all state regions. Each partner will build and lead digital inclusion efforts in their region and tribe while also providing support for community and regional-scale broadband infrastructure solutions and investments. The Partners will receive funding to support additional capacity by MCA in partnership with the Maine Broadband Coalition (MBC) and National Digital Equity Center (NDEC).
The Get Ready Community Support program will accelerate community broadband planning at a regional scale through tailored technical assistance and the coordination of multiple professional service providers to support participants. Through this approach, we hope to make the planning process more efficient for all public and private partners working to achieve Maine’s connectivity goals while building a pipeline of private-public partnerships ready to leverage and accelerate future state funding deployment.