American Broadband wins grant to expand fiber network in Nebraska

Jan. 18, 2022
The Nebraska Legislature appropriated the funding for the American Broadband, Nebraska expansion and other projects by passing the Nebraska Broadband Bridge Act.

American Broadband on Jan. 12 announced the approval of its application for grant funding to connect rural communities with reliable high-speed internet service through the Nebraska Broadband Bridge Program.

The $776,000 grant awarded by the Nebraska Public Service Commission will support the expansion of American Broadband, Nebraska’s primary fiber broadband network, adding capacity to serve eastern Nebraska residential and business locations in Saunders, Dodge and Washington counties.

Customers in Leshara, Nickerson and Fontanelle, Nebraska, are anticipated to begin being served by the expanded network in 2023.

The Nebraska Legislature appropriated the funding for the American Broadband, Nebraska expansion and other projects by passing the Nebraska Broadband Bridge Act, sponsored by Sen. Curt Friesen of Henderson, Nebraska.

The bill makes eligible $40 million in funding to internet providers over two years to expand access to broadband capable of download/upload speeds of 100/100 megabits per second (Mbps).

American Broadband, Nebraska’s main fiber backbone provider, furnishes up to 1Gbps of high-speed internet services – significantly faster speeds than what is currently offered in the expansion area and beneficial for common uses such as e-commerce, data transmission and teleconferencing, as well as virtual and distance learning.

“The Nebraska Broadband Bridge Act provides essential resources for reliable and improved broadband services to rural communities. We are grateful for the Nebraska Legislature’s unanimous support of the bill and Senator Curt Friesen’s commitment to its success,” said Timothy Johnson, president and general manager of American Broadband, Nebraska. “We believe everyone should have access to quality and reliable internet service and are excited to serve future customers in Nebraska with previously unrealized speeds.”

The Nebraska Legislature’s approval of allocating funding for broadband expansion comes as state governments throughout the country secure resources to improve connectivity and close the digital divide affecting rural communities.

Through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, more than $40 billion in federal funding is allocated for state broadband deployment grants to connect unserved and underserved communities, bringing broadband access to millions of Americans.

Chris Eldredge, CEO of American Broadband, said the expansion in Nebraska is part of the company’s next phase of growth, which also includes continuous organic expansion and acquisition initiatives in the year ahead.

“Having reliable, high-speed internet service is becoming an increasingly important part of daily life. We are excited to soon be offering enhanced internet services in eastern Nebraska and beyond,” Eldredge concluded. “In addition to this critical infrastructure funding investment in the state, American Broadband is committed to its continued investment in our network and services.”

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