U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced Monday that the Department’s Economic Development Administration is awarding a $2.6 million grant to Mosaic Technologies, Cameron, to install more than 70 miles of broadband fiber optic cable in Barron and Washburn counties to expand access and increase reliability. This EDA project, to be matched with $3 million in local funds, is expected to create 54 jobs, retain 616 jobs, and generate $1.5 million in private investment.
“President Biden is committed to expanding broadband access throughout the country,” Raimondo said. “This EDA investment in Wisconsin’s Barron and Washburn counties makes the region competitive for retaining and attracting businesses, jobs and private investment, and it builds resiliency to future economic disruptions.”
“The Economic Development Administration is pleased to support Mosaic Technologies in their efforts to expand broadband access in Wisconsin,” Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo said. “This EDA project will boost connectivity to ensure continuous business operations by installing broadband fiber and associated electronic transport components to serve business areas.”
“The coronavirus pandemic further underscored the digital divide in our state, and whether they are going to school or running a business, access to broadband is a necessity for families and businesses across Wisconsin to bounce back and better,” Gov. Tony Evers said. “That’s why I declared 2021 the Year of Broadband Access and have put state and federal funds to good use to expand access and affordability for Wisconsinites. This grant will help us build on that work, and I want to thank President Biden and his administration for helping ensure our communities see the long-term, sustainable recovery they need.”
“The last year highlighted how consistent, affordable internet access is crucial for small businesses, families, and communities in Wisconsin,” Sen. Tammy Baldwin said. “I applaud the Biden Administration for making this investment in Washburn and Barron counties and will keep working to pass bipartisan infrastructure legislation to continue expanding internet access in Wisconsin.”