The Department of Public Service is seeking proposals from internet service providers to extend broadband service to “underserved” locations throughout Vermont, as defined in 30 V.S.A, § 7515b(a), as amended by H.966 (2020). The Department is making $12 Million available for two programs: the Connectivity Initiative and the new Get Vermonters Connected Now Initiative (GVCNI). This grant cycle is funded by the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, and is subject to the associated federal restrictions.
The new GVCNI program, created by the Vermont Legislature in H.966, is funded through the Connectivity Initiative and prioritizes projects in underserved locations that result in broadband access to low-income households where K-12 students, teleworkers, and telehealth patients reside. The Department has published a list of eligible and “priority” addresses. Any location lacking service of 25/3 Mbps is eligible, and priority addresses are defined as:
- Locations lacking a connection faster than 4/1 Mbps
- Locations with a K-12 student lacking a 25/3 Mbps connection
- Locations with a remote worker lacking a 25/3 Mbps connection
- Locations with telehealth needs
The $12 Million in grant funds will be made available in three competitive funding rounds of $4 Million each. The first deadline for proposal submissions is July 30, 2020.
- NOTICE OF INTENT DUE BY: JULY 21, 2020, BY 4:30 PM
- QUESTIONS FROM RESPONDENTS (IN WRITING) DUE BY: July 21, 2020
- WRITTEN ANSWERS TO RESPONDENTS WHO HAVE FILED NOTICE OF INTENT DUE BY: JULY 22, 2020
- ROUND 1 PROPOSALS DUE BY: JULY 30, 2020, BY 4:30 PM
- ROUND 2 PROPOSALS DUE BY: AUGUST 14, 2020, BY 4:30 PM
- ROUND 3 PROPOSALS DUE BY: AUGUST 21, 2020, BY 4:30 PM
Please see the Department's Connectivity Initiative webpage for more information, such as the eligible locations, priority locations, scoring matrix, and the RFP document.