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More than $100M could be headed to Maine to improve broadband

The American Rescue Plan passed the House Wednesday afternoon.
Sen. Angus King discusses broadband aspect of American Rescue Plan
Sen. Angus King discusses broadband aspect of American Rescue Plan
Published: Mar. 10, 2021 at 11:54 PM EST
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WASHINGTON D.C., (WABI) - More than $100M could be headed to Maine to improve broadband.

This money is included in the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan.

That plan allocates ten billion dollars in funding for broadband as well as more than seven billion to make sure schools and students have internet access.

Senator Angus King, said, ”You’ve got kids that can’t connect remotely to their schools, that’s a problem. If you’ve got seniors who can’t do telehealth because of no broadband, that’s a problem. If you’ve got people in rural areas, who can’t work from home. That’s a problem so the pandemic really sorts of put the spotlight on how important broadband was and Maine has good broadband in many communities but in the rural areas, not so much. That’s where this is directly aimed at. That’s gonna make a real difference. It’s not going to get us all the way home, but I think it’s going to really make a difference.”

The plan passed the House Wednesday afternoon.

“As the coronavirus pandemic forced people across the country to reimagine daily life, there was no tool more valuable than an affordable, high-speed broadband connection,” said Senator King. “Over the last year, a high-speed broadband connection has helped Americans work remotely, engage in distance learning, access telemedicine, and stay connected with family and loved ones. But for too many, slow broadband speeds have blocked them from these essential tools – especially in rural communities, low-income households, and on tribal lands.

SenatorAngus King says he along with Senator Mark Warner of Virginia pushed for broadband to be in the American Rescue Plan.

“The pandemic has cost Americans so much already; we cannot allow another casualty of this virus to be the widening of the digital divide harming our rural and underserved communities,” Senator King added. “Funds for broadband infrastructure and digital equity will create jobs in the short-term to speed America’s economic recovery, and support long-term economic success for rural communities by allowing Americans to pursue economic and educational success, no matter where they live.”

Senator Angus King says if this is passed, he looks forward to working with Governor Mills.

Americans are now waiting to see if President Joe Biden signs off on the package.

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