June 27, 2023

New Mexico to get $675 million for broadband expansion

New Mexico will receive $675 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to expand broadband access across the state.

“It is no accident that this funding made up the largest percentage of the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law; broadband projects are incredibly expensive and a vital part (of) every aspect of our lives,” Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said in a press release Monday. “This funding empowers New Mexico to continue to bridge the digital divide and create equal opportunities for our residents. I’m grateful to President Biden and New Mexico’s Congressional delegation for their roles in securing this funding for our state.”

The $675,372,311 in funding comes from the federal Broadband Equity Access and Deployment program under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

By the end of 2023, New Mexico is expected to submit a plan to the federal government discussing how the funding will be used.

“The state will focus projects on enhancing connectivity in unserved and underserved communities, educational institutions, healthcare facilities, and tribal lands,” the press release states.

Lujan Grisham announced a pilot program in 2022 called Connect New Mexico that was established to cover up to 75 percent of broadband network expansion projects in unserved and underserved areas across New Mexico.

Lujan Grisham made $54 million in grants and $35 million in matching funds available for broadband projects, the press release states.

 “It is estimated that 23 percent of New Mexico households do not have access to reliable internet,” the press release states.