Over $7.7 billion in State and Local Fiscal Recovery Fund (SLFRF) money had been budgeted for broadband projects as of March 31, according to a new report from the U.S. Treasury, which is administering the program. The SLFRF program was created in the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

The fund has a total budget of $350 billion. State and local governments can use the funding for a range of infrastructure projects, including broadband, and some are directly a considerable portion of their funding for that purpose.

Since January, communities increased their SLFRF budgets for broadband projects by 3%, Treasury said. A previous Treasury report found that $7.3 billion in SLFRF funding had been budgeted for broadband projects.

States and the largest cities and counties have budgeted nearly 80% of their total SLFRF money, according to the newer report released last week.

ARPA Broadband

The report cited several examples of state and local governments that are budgeting SLFRF money for broadband, including:

  • Box Elder County, Utah will use $1.5 million in SLFRF money for last-mile infrastructure in underserved rural communities
  • The City of Brownsville, Texas will use $20 million for internet connectivity
  • The State of Iowa will use nearly $200 million from the SLFRF program, in combination with $149 million from the Capital Projects Fund, to upgrade broadband connections in over 50 counties
  • New Kent County, Virginia will use nearly $4.5 billion in SLFRF money to provide access to high-speed broadband to every household in the county, including 3,000 currently unserved locations
  • The State of West Virginia will use $90 million from the SLFRF program, in combination with $130 million in CPF money, for the West Virginia State Broadband Initiative.

The Capital Projects Fund is another ARPA broadband program.

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