The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Wednesday awarded CenturyLink with a $35 million donation that will provide 45,000 rural homeowners with access to high-speed internet access. The money was awarded as part of the federal governments Connect America Fund which is meant to provide broadband internet in areas previously thought to be to cost prohibitive for standardized broadband connectivity.
CenturyLink could have received upwards of $90 million from the Connect America Fund but were forced to take only a portion of that funding because expansion required for the $90 million would have been far to financially prohibitive for the organization.
CenturyLink has filed a waiver application which if approved will allow for 60,000 more rural homes to receive high-speed internet. CenturyLink has already received waiver support from some big state agencies including the Washington Public Service Commission and the Minnesota Department of Commerce.
The FCC compiled a $300 million funding pool which will be available to carriers during a reverse auction from September 27th.
In a statement regarding its received funds CenturyLink wrote:
“CenturyLink was eligible for nearly $90 million in CAF Phase I funding. However, restrictions on the use of the CAF 1 funds made further deployment uneconomic.
“CenturyLink is excited to be able to work with the FCC to bring broadband services to thousands of homes for the first time. In addition to the incremental CAF funding, we are investing millions of dollars of our own money to bring robust broadband services to more customers because we believe these services will bring essential educational and economic opportunities to high-cost, rural areas of the country,” said Steve Davis, CenturyLink executive vice president for public policy and government relations.”
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