Saturday, February 20, 2010

Rhinelander Daily News: Schools, libraries to benefit from broadband funds

Link to February 19 article.

Excerpt: Among the local recipients are Rhinelander High School and the Rhinelander District Library, the Crandon Public Library, Olson Memorial Library in Eagle River, the Minocqua Public Library, the Demmer Memorial Library in Three Lakes and Three Lakes High School.

“High-speed Internet access is critical to the success of our state’s entrepreneurs, businesses, students and families,” Governor Doyle said. “This project will create jobs to lay and install fiber cable, for telecommunications contractors and technicians, and in fields like construction, manufacturing, masonry and electrical wiring. Through the Recovery Act, the Obama Administration is making major investments in Wisconsin’s broadband infrastructure to help our schools and libraries access high-speed Internet.”

The announcement comes only a few weeks after a coalition of Northwoods-based government, business and tribal entities learned it would not be receiving a $20.5 million grant for broadband expansion in the Northwoods. The coalition, spearheaded by the Forest County Potawatomi-owned business One Prospect Technologies, sought $20.5 million to provide broadband access to a six-county area in northern Wisconsin.

Brad Kowieski of One Prospect said Thursday’s announcement is great for those schools and libraries currently lacking high-speed Internet access, but it doesn’t necessarily address the need for broadband in the Northwoods.

“It’s great for the libraries and schools that don’t have broadband, but for the majority of the Northwoods it doesn’t address the need for broadband to the end user,” Kowieski said.

Related articles:

Wausau Daily Herald: Rural libraries to gain high-speed Internet access. (2/20/2010)

Green Bay Press-Gazette: Rural school districts, libraries targeted for $22.9 million in broadband upgrades. (2/19/2010)

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