Applications for high-speed internet in rural communities being accepted

According to a news release that was issued by the Ministry of Citizens’ Service, local governments, internet service providers and community organizations will now be allowed to apply for grant funding to connect to high-speed internet.

The announcement is geared towards British Columbians who require it the most — those living in rural, remote and Indigenous communities that do not have readily available internet access.

“High costs are one of the main barriers to connecting communities,” said Jinny Sims, the Minister of Citizens’ Services. “This funding will support last-mile projects that will help close the gap between urban and rural areas, and allow B.C.’s smaller communities to better participate in the digital economy.”

The program, which started on July 1, is helmed by Northern Development Initiative Trust. They will be accepting applications for the Connecting British Columbia program, so homes, businesses and other institutions can connect to high-speed internet.

In addition, the news release states that funding is also available to help communities start the planning process for future developments by creating unique, regional infrastructure strategies for high-speed connectivity.

Eligible and successful applicants may potentially see last-mile projects receiving up to a 50 per cent contribution for eligible costs. Funding will also be available for improving connectivity to entire regions of British Columbia.

Applications for transport fibre projects will be accepted beginning Sept. 1, 2018. A total of $16 million is available.

“Connecting British Columbia has helped our province accelerate the growth of our digital economy,” said Joel McKay, Northern Development Initiative Trust CEO. “By leveraging funds from the private sector and other levels of government, the program has been critical in helping deliver the infrastructure projects B.C. needs to compete, now and in the future.”

Per information listed in the news release, the funding and grant opportunities comes as a part of $40 million — that was committed in 2017 — to expand the Connecting British Columbia program, which is administered by Northern Development Initiative Trust.

Furthermore, the release states that an additional $83 million in funding from federal, provincial and local partners has been announced since January 2018. This further funding will reportedly benefit approximately 187 communities across the province, including 69 First Nations and Indigenous communities.

Submissions will be reviewed and assessed on a first-come, first-served basis. Applicants must demonstrate that their projects will be completed by March 31, 2020, according to the news release.

Just Posted

Column: the 4-H way of life

Local 4-H member Jacinta Meir on what being a member means to her

Local soccer player Sydney Kelly receives prestigious Premier’s Award

The 18-year-old trained with UNBC’s soccer team while in high school

2018 marks 100 years since the end of World War I

Quesnel legion’s historian Doug Carey documents some of the atrocities of WWI

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

North Coast figure skater to star in Dancing On Ice

Carlotta Edwards learned to skate in Prince Rupert, before becoming a star with millions of viewers

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

Kuhnhackl scores 2 odd goals as Isles dump Canucks 5-2

Vancouver drops second game in two nights

Stink at B.C. school prompts complaints of headaches, nausea

Smell at Abbotsford school comes from unauthorized composting operation

Fear of constitutional crisis escalates in U.S.; Canadians can relate

Some say President Donald Trump is leading the U.S. towards a crisis

B.C.-based pot producer Tilray reports revenue surge, net loss

Company remains excited about ‘robust’ cannabis industry

Canada stands pat on Saudi arms sales, even after hearing Khashoggi tape

Khashoggi’s death at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul further strained Riyadh’s already difficult relationship with Ottawa

Feds pledge money for young scientists, but funding for in-house research slips

Canada’s spending on science is up almost 10 per cent since the Liberals took office, but spending on in-house research is actually down

‘Targeted incident’ leads to death of Quesnel man

One man died of life-threatening injuries on Nov. 8

Disabled boy has ‘forgiven’ bullies who walked on him in stream, mom says

A Cape Breton teen who has cerebral palsy was told to lie in a stream as other kids walked over him

Most Read