The Rural Utilities Service issued four more broadband stimulus awards late yesterday, just in time to meet the September 30 deadline for making all awards in the program. A Rural Utilities Service spokesman told Telecompetitor this morning he was still waiting to find out if these were the final award announcements. Potentially some award decisions could have been made yesterday without the awards being announced yet.

Windstream added another award to its winnings in the announcements yesterday–$7.3 million for a project in Arkansas, bringing its total winnings to 16 projects out of 30 for which the company applied. DigitalBridge, which previously won an award for $800,000 in Indiana, won another in Mississippi for $2.6 million for a WiMAX network. Twenty-eight other projects for which Digital Bridge applied have not yet been funded.

The other winners were Arizona Nevada Tower Corporation, which won $7.75 million for a microwave radio backbone and middle-mile system in Nevada and the Willard Telephone Company, which won $800,000 to upgrade its fiber-to-the-home network in Colorado.

The odds are looking slimmer and slimmer for Qwest, which may have nixed itself by not separating its application for funding in multiple states into individual filings.

UPDATE – The Rural Utilities Service later today confirmed that it has completed the broadband stimulus awards process. A spokesman also confirmed that all awards made had been formally announced.

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