The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

March 5, 2014

Stanly County seeks grant for broadband Internet

By Ritchie Starnes, News Editor

Wednesday, March 5, 2014 — Stanly County leaders hope to tap into a federal grant that would help bring broadband to the area.

At its scheduled meeting Monday night the Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved applying for the broadband grant with the Federal Communication Commission under the Connect America initiative. Last month the board identified broadband, a high-capacity transmission for Internet services, as one of its top priorities toward economic development.

“This is one of the most important things we can be working on,” said Lindsey Dunevant, board vice chairman.

The FCC is offering grant funding to build broadband infrastructure in unserved and under-served areas. There is a focus on providing broadband services to anchor institutions such as schools, colleges/universities, libraries, public safety, healthcare facilities, local governments and nonprofit agencies.

Commissioners said they hope to build its broadband infrastructure along the N.C. Highway 24-27 and N.C. 49 corridors.

Stanly County is one of 18 counties across the state that is not benefiting from the efforts of Microelectronics Center of North Carolina (MCNC) to bring high-speed broadband capabilities for economic development.

Randolph and Montgomery counties are also among those left out of the MCNC broadband initiative.

To submit story ideas, contact Ritchie Starnes at (704) 982-2121 ext. 28.