State Public Works Board accepting grant applications for broadband construction
Over $43 million in federal grant dollars available for broadband projects to unserved and underserved communities
OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington State Public Works Board (PWB) is accepting applications for broadband infrastructure construction grants now through Oct. 1, 2021. Cities, towns, counties, special purpose districts and Tribes are eligible to apply.
It is important to note that RCW 43.155.160(5)(o) requires applicants to contact local Internet service providers (ISPs) near the proposed project area a minimum of six weeks prior to submitting an application for funding to the board. This contact is to request the ISP’s plan to upgrade broadband service in the project area to speeds that meet or exceed the state’s definition of broadband service within the time frame of the proposed project. Applicants must submit documentation of this interaction with their application.
Application webinar July 28
For guidance on completing the application, register to attend a free virtual application webinar on July 28, 2021 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon.
“The Public Works Board is excited to announce the opening of our broadband construction cycle with federally funded grant monies,” said Board Chair Kathryn Gardow. “Having access to high speed broadband service is crucial for closing the digital divide and is a priority for the state and the Board to ensure broadband service to the people of the state of Washington. The Public Works Board expects to be a stable source for infrastructure funding, including broadband, long into the future.”
Rating and ranking begins immediately after the close of the application cycle, as does the ISP challenge process. Notification of grant awards is expected in November.
Please visit the Public Works Board’s Broadband Financing webpage for more information and to apply.