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Biden-Harris Administration Awards Nearly $50 Million to Expand and Strengthen Regional and National Internet Networks

September 06, 2023
News Media Contact
NTIA, Office of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced nearly $50 million to four organizations to expand middle mile high-speed Internet infrastructure in New Hampshire, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wyoming. 

Today’s announcement is a critical milestone in Biden-Harris Administration’s effort to ensure that everyone in America has access to affordable, reliable high-speed internet as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. Under the Internet for All Initiative, the Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program invests in projects that build regional networks that connect to national Internet networks.

Middle mile Internet infrastructure carries large amounts of data over long distances, increases capacity to local networks, boosts network resiliency, lowers the cost of bringing high-speed Internet service to unconnected households, and helps connect unserved regions to the Internet backbone.

With these grants, all funding for grant awards from the Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program has been awarded to 36 organizations across 40 states and territories. No additional awards will be announced.

“Building robust middle mile networks is a vital step to ensuring every community has access to reliable and affordable high-speed Internet service,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “This investment in Internet infrastructure, made possible by President Biden and his Investing in America agenda, will help close the digital divide and deliver the benefits and tools of our interconnected society to all of America.”

Funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the $1 billion middle mile program funds construction, improvement, or acquisition of middle mile infrastructure, along with administrative costs associated with running the program. Middle mile projects do not directly connect end-user locations.

“Middle mile networks are the interstate highways of the Internet, carrying large amounts of data at high speeds to connect entire communities,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communication and Information Alan Davidson. “These final awards complete the Biden Administration’s nearly $1 billion investment in regional Internet networks that will help us bring affordable, reliable high-speed Internet connection to everyone in America.”

New Middle Mile Grants

  • The middle mile projects will cover 27 counties across 4 states.
  • The projects will deploy 518.5 miles of new fiber that will pass within 1,000 feet of 164 community anchor institutions.
  • All projects use future-proof fiber as the primary technology.
  • Awardees are investing an additional $23 million of outside match funding into the projects.

Background on the Enabling Middle Mile Grant Program

  • Over 260 applications were submitted totaling $7.47 billion in funding requests.
  • Applications for the Middle Mile program were due by September 30, 2022. NTIA extended the application deadline to Nov. 1, 2022, for eligible entities that submitted applications for projects that would deploy in areas impacted by natural disasters.
  • To raise awareness of the program and guide prospective applicants, NTIA performed extensive outreach, including hosting 12 public office hour sessions, conducting four public webinars for prospective applicants, and participating in six industry-led conferences to discuss the Middle Mile program.
  • Eligible awardees for the program included states, Tribal governments, utility companies, telecommunication companies, and nonprofit entities. For a full list of eligible entities visit InternetForAll.Gov.

Grant Details and Stakeholder Quotes

Additional grant details are available on InternetForAll.Gov

New Hampshire





County of Grafton NH


The project will develop the 222-mile County of Grafton middle-mile backbone through population centers by building new fiber optic cable to close gaps and leveraging existing infrastructure to reduce the cost of buildout. The backbone will be available for municipalities to tap into and run additional fiber optic cable through their municipalities to reach the last mile. The network will provide the electronics and optics necessary to provide service at identified municipal/County anchor locations and will allow for future growth and expansion with minimal additional equipment. The non-municipal/County locations will be served through dark fiber access only, allowing ISPs to make their own investments within individual communities.

Senator Jeanne Shaheen

Providing the resources to connect unserved and underserved communities to reliable, high-speed internet is one of the best investments we can make to secure future growth in our state. I'm proud to welcome this $12 million federal grant to build-out over two hundred miles of fiber optic cable that will help deliver faster internet service to Granite Staters in Grafton County.
Senator Maggie Hassan

With nearly $12 million in funding from the bipartisan infrastructure law, this grant is going to make a tremendous difference in connecting every corner of Grafton County to affordable and reliable high-speed internet. For years, Granite Staters have pushed to expand high-speed access to every family and community, and with the bipartisan infrastructure law we are now making that a reality.
Governor Chris Sununu
“In 2020 New Hampshire was the first state in the nation to use CARES Act Funds to build out broadband services, and we haven’t slowed down since. This grant is a key investment that puts the necessary infrastructure in place to ensure that broadband coverage can be built out to the very last mile. This is a big win for New Hampshire residents, businesses, and municipalities.”

Congresswoman Annie Kuster
“This investment from the bipartisan infrastructure law is a game-changer for New Hampshire. These federal funds will help towns and communities throughout Grafton County connect homes, hospitals, schools, and more directly to high-speed internet and make future technology upgrades less expensive and more effective. I was proud to help secure this grant for our state and look forward to seeing how local leaders will use these funds to build a brighter future for all.”





Blue Ridge Advisory Services Group, Inc. TN


Built over four years, the proposed route will be 155 miles of new fiber cable that significantly improves the existing Scott County Telephone Cooperative (SCTC) network architecture by creating 4 new rings, closes several unprotected laterals, spans across unserved areas, and interconnects (via a network-to-network interface NNI) with East Kentucky Networks (EKN).






Mid-Atlantic Broadband Communities Corporation VA


The applicant plans to construct approximately 130 miles of new fiber to enable open-access middle mile connectivity and enhance grant funds for local ISPs and existing carriers. This aims to increase their speed to the market and provide route diversity for their last-mile broadband service to residential and business customers. It will enable technology-driven businesses to provide high-paying jobs in the existing industrial and business parks in the region. The applicant expects to build eight (8) open-access middle mile fiber segments to provide critical broadband connectivity and diversity for economic development purposes to thirteen localities in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine
“Access to high-quality, high-speed internet is crucial in the 21st century. We are proud to have played a key role in creating and passing legislation that continues to deliver substantial funding to Virginia in order to achieve universal broadband coverage across the Commonwealth.”

Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan (VA-04) 
“In our 21st century economy, Internet is no longer a luxury but a necessity. Thanks to the leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration and congressional Democrats’ passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Americans in historically unserved and underserved communities are gaining access to reliable, affordable high-speed internet. This funding will make a meaningful difference in the lives of residents across Virginia.”





Visionary Communications, LLC WY


The 11.5-mile project will bring critical fiber backhaul to the main tower site feeding Oriva Hills, substantially increasing the capacity available which addresses the primary limitation of broadband availability and will be available for all last-mile providers to utilize. The fiber build will be augmented with the addition of two new tower sites, upgraded microwave backhauls, high-capacity microwave links, and fiber backhaul to facilitate 100/20 Mbps fixed wireless service at nearly every unserved residence in Oriva Hills. The Wright Point of Presence will connect the community to Visionary Communications existing middle-mile fiber infrastructure.


Internet for All and Investing in America

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law includes a historic $65 billion investment to expand affordable and reliable high-speed Internet access in communities across the U.S. NTIA recently launched a series of new grant programs funded by the law that will build high-speed Internet infrastructure across the country, create more low-cost high-speed Internet service options, and address the digital equity and inclusion needs in our communities. 

Additionally, the Federal Communications Commission’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward Internet service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal Lands. Visit GetInternet.Gov to sign-up. 

For more information on the Biden-Harris Administration’s high-speed Internet programs, please visit InternetForAll.Gov

President Biden’s Investing in America agenda and his vision for growing the economy from the middle out and bottom up – Bidenomics – is creating opportunity across the country. Already, as a result of legislation passed by President Biden, the Biden-Harris Administration has awarded $260 billion in funding for 35,000 infrastructure projects across the country. Companies have announced over $500 billion in investments in the United States since President Biden took office, and the Administration has helped over 20 million households save money on their internet costs.


About the National Telecommunications and Information Administration 

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is the Executive Branch agency that advises the President on telecommunications and information policy issues. NTIA’s programs and policymaking focus largely on expanding broadband Internet access and adoption in America, expanding the use of spectrum by all users, advancing public safety communications, and ensuring that the Internet remains an engine for innovation and economic growth.