Charter, Lumen, ALLO score in Nebraska's $19.7M funding around

Nebraska’s Public Service Commission (PSC) this week authorized $19.7 million in grant awards to 10 ISPs that are tasked to provide symmetrical broadband speeds of at least 100 Mbps.

Local fiber provider Hartelco amassed the most funding at $7.2 million, with the largest individual grant of $3.9 million. It’s undertaking four projects in the rural communities of Fordyce, Menominee, St. Helena and the Lewis and Clark Lake reservoir.

Other awardees that received grants totaling at least $1 million were Cambridge Telephone Company ($1.2 million), Cox Nebraska Telcom ($2.4 million), Diller Telephone Company ($1.25 million), Glenwood Telecommunications ($3.5 million) and Pinpoint Communications ($2.6 million), all of which are based in Nebraska. Stealth Broadband, which operates out of Norfolk, Nebraska, won one grant worth around $786,000.

As for the bigger-name providers, ALLO Communications scored two grants worth around 196,000 and $27,000 for projects in South Sidney and the Fremont-Dodge Municipal Inland Port Authority. Charter and Lumen’s CenturyLink each got one grant apiece worth $491,881 and $92,280, respectively.

The PSC’s order doesn’t indicate how many locations each project will cover. It did note, however, applicants requested a total of $28.9 million for projects – roughly $10 million more than the funding remaining for the 2023 program year.

Applicants were from the Nebraska Broadband Bridge Program, which uses money from the Capital Projects Fund (CPF). Grantees have until July 9, 2025 to finish their projects.

A project will be considered complete when the network infrastructure has been built and the network’s capable of “delivering services to any and all end users in the project area within ten days of receiving a request for service, at a level sufficient to test performance.”

The state last June doled out more than $61 million in CPF funding to Charter, Lumen, Great Plains Communications, Windstream, among others.