Senate approves bill to expand Minnesota high-speed internet access

The Minnesota Senate today approved a bill that invests heavily in expanding broadband access to unserved and underserved Minnesota communities. The broadband funding was part of a comprehensive agriculture, broadband, and housing bill.

“High-speed internet is no longer just a luxury, it is a utility as important as electricity,” Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller (R-Winona) said. “There are still gaps in Minnesota’s broadband coverage, particularly in rural communities, but we are making progress every year. This bill takes another big step forward in that ongoing effort.”

The legislation directs a historic level of up to $210 million of federal money to improve Minnesota broadband which is on top of the $70 million the legislature passed last session. The Senate bill works to ensure Minnesota is not left behind in receiving federal broadband dollars.

Investments in the Border-to-Border broadband grant program have become increasingly important to connect all Minnesotans to the modern economy. Roughly 240,000 Minnesota households are without reliable internet access including 25% of rural Minnesota households. 

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