State Rep. Beth Griffin today announced Southwest Michigan Communications Inc. will receive $10.7 million in a loan/grant combination to deploy Fiber-to-the-Premises (FTTP) broadband services to Van Buren and Allegan counties. The initiative is part of the USDA’s ReConnect Pilot Program.
USDA Rural Development provides integral resources to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements, business development, housing, community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care, and high-speed internet access in rural areas.
The project will extend broadband availability to 22 farms, 19 businesses, and 7,700 residents spread over 100 square miles.
“As we’ve been forced to stay at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, internet access has become more vital than ever for the people of Southwest Michigan,” said Griffin, of Mattawan. “Our children are learning from home, many workers and business owners are working from home, and for many patients, the only way to receive the routine and preventative health care they need is via telehealth. This grant will help to connect thousands of people in our most rural communities with internet access.”
To learn more about ReConnect Program eligibility, technical assistance, and recent announcements, visit www.usda.gov/reconnect.
Government was meant to be of the people, not one person – and the Michigan Supreme Court rightfully ruled to restore the voice of Southwest Michigan families by confirming that our state’s COVID-19 response needs to be a collaborative effort.
Rep. Beth Griffin, of Mattawan, today helped announce a plan giving the people of Michigan more certainty and control in these challenging times – allowing for data-driven COVID-19 responses that reflect conditions in local communities.
State Rep. Beth Griffin and the Michigan House earlier this month approved several measures to continue protecting and helping Southwest Michigan families during the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic, including extending unemployment benefits for Michigan’s hardworking employees who were laid off through no fault of their own.
“It’s unacceptable that our seniors have not been protected the way they deserve from the start,” said Griffin, of Mattawan. “That’s why I’m fighting for major changes to the previous nursing home mandates. Our seniors and their loved ones deserve much better.