Congressman Tim Ryan Announces $125,000 for Summit County Broadband
Akron, OH – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) today announced a $125,000 Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant that will be used for broadband infrastructure in Summit County. This funding was provided under the CARES Act, which allotted $1.5 billion for the EDA for economic development assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.
“This global pandemic has laid bare just how important access to broadband is for hard-working people to participate in the 21st-century economy. Whether it’s completing schoolwork, accessing job applications, banking online, or any number of other resources we access through the internet, broadband has become an essential utility. I’m proud to announce this critical funding for Summit County that will get more Ohioans connected and up to speed,” said Congressman Tim Ryan.
This EDA investment supports Summit County, and the municipally-owned broadband utility, FairlawnGig, with developing a strategy for additional and enhanced broadband service for Akron, Ohio, a designated Opportunity Zone. The project includes an assessment of existing fiber assets, evaluation of market conditions and demand, identification of potential industry partners, investigation of interjurisdictional and other relevant legal issues, options for a phased construction approach, and geographical analysis and recommended fiber routes. Once implemented, the strategy will establish the analytical foundation for critical broadband infrastructure development in the area and help guide local leaders and stakeholders as they make the region more resilient to future economic shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic.