ConnectME Authority Announces Eighth Round of Broadband Infrastructure Grant Opportunity

January 14, 2013

The ConnectME Authority is pleased to announce the eighth grant round of our broadband infrastructure funding program. We are looking for creative solutions for expanding affordable broadband service to the unserved areas of Maine. For this round, we continue to request smaller, focused proposals, with a suggested grant limit for each project of $100,000, funding no more than 50% of the total project, while recognizing that we can be flexible for exceptional proposals.

Legislation creating the ConnectME Authority provides for funding from a 0.25% surcharge on instate communications services. Due to the limited funding, we are asking that interested applicants submit brief, pre-application letters describing a project or projects by February 15, 2013.

We also require that prospective applicants indicate in their pre-application letter that they have communicated with nearby incumbent or existing broadband service providers for current and future plans for expansion in the proposed project area. The intent of this contact is to minimize overlap and challenges, and to prevent ConnectME Authority funds from being used in areas where private investment is or will deliver broadband service.

We recommend that applicants find partners among the various providers of broadband services or community-based organizations to use the grants as seed money to get operational infrastructure installed. The amount of local public and private funding will be considered when reviewing the full applications.

Please see the MS Word document or PDF links below for the full announcement and further information.

Eighth Grant Round Pre-Application PDF format

Eighth Grant Round Pre-Application MS Word format