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One Maryland Broadband Network Moves Forward

The Governor's office updated Marylanders on the progress of the One Maryland Broadband Network this week. The initiative is designed to provide a unified means of communication through all levels of government and improve broadband internet access for undeserved and rural portions of the state. The new broadband lines will increase access to high speed internet for more than 1,000 of what the state calls "anchor agencies" -- government agencies, community support centers,  hospitals, libraries, educational institutions, and police departments.

Initial funding for the One Maryland Broadband Network was established in late 2010. The project received more than $115 million in competitive federal grant funds through the U.S. Department of Commerce's Broadband Technology Opportunities Program through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, one of the largest broadband grants awarded in 2010. Additional funds were raised through state local and private contributions bringing the project total to $158 million.

To date, $16 million of this money has been spent on the initial field and design engineering phase of the project, which has created 241 jobs. Engineering is underway in every county in Maryland, with an estimated 63% of the engineering completed. Construction of the One Maryland Broadband network's new broadband lines has begun in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Howard, Baltimore, Carroll, Charles, and Prince Georges Counties. The remaining Maryland counties are expected to begin construction by the end of 2011.

Writer: Amy McNeal
Source: Office of the Governor of Maryland
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