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Empower Rural Iowa Broadband Grant Program

This funding record is inactive. Please see the program website or contact the program sponsor to determine if this program is currently accepting applications or will open again in the future.

State of Iowa Office of the Chief Information Officer
Aug 5, 2020

Jessica Turba


The Empower Rural Iowa Emergency Broadband Expansion Program utilizes CARES Act funding to expand internet connectivity for businesses and residents to address the increased need for distance learning, telework, telehealth, and other remote services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Grants help provide consistent, reliable broadband service to unserved and underserved areas of Iowa.

Eligible grant activities include:

  • Infrastructure projects to install broadband infrastructure that facilitates broadband service with download/upload speeds at or above 25/3 Mbps or 100/20 Mbps in order to reduce or eliminate unserved broadband units in the state
  • Adoption projects that provide discounts for broadband subscription service with download/upload speeds of 25/3 Mbps or faster to help reduce barriers to service

Eligible applicants are communications service providers, including but not limited to, private sector carriers, local governments, utilities, school districts, and other entities that provide or intend to provide Broadband service.

Geographic coverage
Amount of funding

Estimated total program funding: $50,000,000

Up to $45,000,000 of the total funding will be available for infrastructure projects, and up to $5,000,000 is available for adoption projects.

Award amounts for individual projects are as follows:

  • Infrastructure projects: Awards may not exceed 50% of the total project cost for service provided at 100/20 speed or higher. Awards may not exceed 35% of project costs for service at speeds of 25/3 Mbps or higher but do not exceed 100/20 Mbps.
  • Adoption projects: A one-time payment of $500 will be made for each new eligible subscriber who adopts broadband service at speeds of 25/3 Mbps or faster through the discount program before December 1, 2020.
Application process

Links to additional guidance and application instructions are available on the program website.

Submit applications through the Iowa Grants Portal.

Tagged as
Broadband · Capital funding · Emergency preparedness and response · Infrastructure · Iowa

For complete information about funding programs, including your application status, please contact funders directly. Summaries are provided for your convenience only. RHIhub does not take part in application processes or monitor application status.