USDA Opens Application Window for Rural Broadband Pilot “ReConnect” Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (“USDA”) Rural Utilities Service (“RUS”) announced that it will begin accepting applications for its rural broadband pilot program, the ReConnect Program, on April 23, 2019 through reconnect.usda.gov.  The ReConnect Program will award up to $600 million to help build broadband infrastructure throughout rural America.  The program will make 3 types of awards available, each with their own application deadline: (1) 100 percent grant, (2) 50 percent grant and 50 percent loan, and (3) 100 percent loan.  Application deadlines are May 31, 2019 for grants, June 21, 2019 for grant and loan combinations, and July 12, 2019 for low-interest loans.  The ReConnect Program is open to a wide range of applicants, including rural telephone and broadband service providers, cooperatives, state and local governments, non-profit organizations, for-profit companies, and Tribal entities.

Anyone interested in applying can find additional information at reconnect.usda.gov.  If you have any questions or would like assistance in this process, please contact Dee Herman at dee@hermanwhiteaker.com, Clare Liedquist at cliedquist@hermanwhiteaker.com, or Molly O’Conor at moconor@hermanwhiteaker.com.