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Regional News

WA State, Spokane Non-Profit Offer Help To Secure Federal Broadband Grants

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Washington Department of Commerce
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Washington’s Department of Commerce says it’s working with a Spokane non-profit organization to make money available for rural counties working to improve broadband service.

Better Health Together is distributing about $200,000 to help people in six eastern Washington counties develop stronger cases for federal broadband grants.

“We are investing in the broadband action teams that exist in each of our counties that Better Health Together serves. So we’ll be working with them to identify projects that would be viable for federal funding for broadband. Our funds will help support the feasibility in network mapping as well as some grant writing support for these communities," said Better Health Together Executive Director Alison Poulsen.

Russ Elliott from the Department of Commerce says he welcomes the help. Elliott works with people in small towns who are looking for faster and more reliable internet service.

“There’s not enough money in the state budget to make it happen so we have to go and find federal funds to help offset the infrastructure costs and potentially some of the ongoing sustainability costs for those networks," Elliott said.

Better Health Together says the grants will help fund two projects each in Spokane, Adams, Lincoln, Stevens, Ferry and Pend Oreille counties, and two projects each for the Spokane, Kalispel and Colville tribes.