Michigan Broadband Officer Is Confident the State Can Achieve Universal Broadband

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Eric Frederick, the Chief Connectivity Officer for the Michigan High-Speed Internet Office, is supremely confident. “I do believe it’s going to be enough,” he said when asked whether the $1.5 billion in Broadband, Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) funding allotted to the state will be enough to get broadband to everyone. The healthy allocation leads Frederick to exclaim rather confidently that Michigan’s unserved and underserved will be largely connected with fiber. Michigan is currently in the rebuttal phase of the BEAD challenge process, a 40-day process that follows the initial challenge phase that ended in early May. A tenet of the BEAD program is that once Volume 2 is approved by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, the 365-day deadline for awarding grants starts. As such, many states, including admittedly Michigan, are in no hurry to have Volume 2 approved. Overall, Fredericks confidence that Michigan’s BEAD funding will be sufficient to achieve universal broadband doesn’t seem to be misguided. 

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