Montpelier, VT, August 25, 2020 – The social distancing that has resulted from the Covid – 19 pandemic have heightened awareness of the disparities in Vermont’s broadband access. In recognition of the urgent need for broadband – for online education, remote work and telehealth service — the Vermont legislature directed some of the Covid-related funding to support the work of Communications Union Districts.
The Lamoille FiberNet Communications Union District (Lamoille FiberNet) received a $100,000 grant from the VT Dept. of Public Service to help fund professional services needed for administration and for its work in assessing utility pole data in its region. “Pole data assessment is the first step in designing an expanded broadband system,” said Lea Kilvadyova, an employee of the Lamoille County Planning Commission and Lamoille FiberNet Clerk. “Once Lamoille FiberNet has this data, it can begin to design the system, gather the needed resources, and seek partners for the system buildout. Although Lamoille FiberNet will need to seek further funding and investments, this is a good start.”
The funding came from the COVID-Response Connected Community Resilience Program Grant program, and Dept. of Public Service gave similar grants from that program to other Communications Union Districts, and is working to support expansion of broadband with technical assistance as well as funding.
The mission of Lamoille FiberNet Communications Union District (LFCUD) is to make locally controlled, affordable and reliable high-speed Internet service available to every address in our member towns.