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USDA announces $667 million in rural broadband funding

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The US Department of Agriculture announced nearly $700 million in funding Monday to expand high-speed broadband access in rural communities across the country.

The USDA’s ReConnect Program is providing $667 million in grants and loans for broadband projects in 22 states and the Marshall Islands in areas that lack access to speeds of at least 100Mbps down and 20Mbps up. Recipients of this funding will be required to build out infrastructure capable of providing upload and download speeds of 100Mbps, surpassing the Federal Communications Commission’s current speed minimums of 25Mbps down and 3Mbps up.

“The reality is, we have faced some challenging times in rural…

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