Blandin Broadband Communities builds on the success of the Demonstration Community component like the ones that were implemented in our region through our Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities program, which was funded by Blandin through federal grant dollars and implemented by the UMVRDC under the guidance of a local broadband steering committee.
Under this new program Blandin is looking for 10 new communities that once selected, will receive planning and organizing support, and the opportunity to apply for grant funding for locally developed projects that address community identified needs. Chosen communities may apply for up to $100,000 in matching funding over a two-year period, with the average amount of grant support anticipated to be $75,000 per community. Being chosen as a Blandin Broadband Community, however, is not a guarantee of grant support.
Applications are due October 15.
Significant commitment on the part of the Blandin Broadband Communities will be expected and required throughout the two-year grant period.
- Communities must commit to recruiting and supporting an inclusive community leadership team that reflects community composition.
- Community leadership team members must be able and willing to commit time and attention to community planning and project development and management.
- Community leadership team member representatives must participate in virtual and in-person meetings with other participating communities.