Bloomer – Earlier this week, State Representative Rob Summerfield (R-Bloomer) joined members of Bloomer Telephone Company and the Wisconsin State Telecommunications Association (WSTA) for the kickoff of their latest broadband expansion project. The project will provide fiber connection to over 300 businesses, farms, and homes in the Town of Colfax in Dunn County. This venture was made possible in part to a more than $608,000 grant Bloomer Telephone received from the State of Wisconsin’s Public Service Commission’s (PSC) Broadband Expansion Grant program; which received a $44 million increase in the latest state budget.
Thursday, Rep. Summerfield again joined broadband proponents in celebrating Ntera, LLC being chosen as the recipient of a $3 million grant to provide fiber broadband access to over 2,000 businesses, farms, and individuals in Chippewa, Rusk, and Taylor counties. This grant was provided on behalf of the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) $600+ million ReConnect program to expand broadband services across rural America.
“Over the past 3 year I have been in office, I have been a strong supporter of broadband access for the Chippewa Valley; voting for massive budget increases and advocating on behalf of area projects. So, I was honored to be a part of these events and delighted to see our local providers being chosen as the recipients of these extremely competitive grants. Thanks to these investments, our telecoms can continue to expand and build upon past projects. Internet access is a necessity, not a luxury, and I am looking forward to seeing these and other projects progress and help my constituents stay connected,” said Rep. Summerfield.
With the addition of this latest federal grant, since 2017, the 67th Assembly District has received nearly $8 million in broadband expansion funding.