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Baker-Polito Administration Celebrates Completion of Make Ready Work, Critical to Extending Broadband to “Last Mile” Towns

Thursday, March 24, 2022

HOLYOKE — Today, the Baker-Polito Administration celebrated the completion of Make Ready work, a four-year, coordinated effort to remove the largest obstacle to extending broadband access across 53 “Last Mile” communities in Western and Central Massachusetts. During a roundtable event hosted at the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC) in Holyoke, Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, and Undersecretary of Community Development Ashley Stolba commemorated the milestone with executives from the utility companies, service providers, and construction contractors who comprised the Make Ready Working Group responsible for delivering high-speed internet access to the doorsteps of 28,000 households in these towns...[t]he membership of the Make Ready Working Group included: Eversource, National Grid, Verizon, Westfield Gas and Electric, Comcast, Charter, ITG, Sertex, MassDOT, the Department of Telecommunications and Cable, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, and the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI).

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Massachusetts FQHC Telehealth Consortium Announces Grant from Essex County Community Foundation to Support New ‘Telehealth Navigator Program’

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The FQHC (Federally Qualified Health Center) Telehealth Consortium (the “Consortium”) has received a grant from the Digital Equity Fund of the Essex County Community Foundation in partnership with the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. The $226,660 grant, funded by the Commonwealth’s “Partnerships for Recovery” initiative, will support a new Telehealth Navigator Program that will increase access to telehealth while also addressing digital equity in under-resourced communities located in Essex County, including Lynn, Salem, Peabody, and Gloucester.

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Commonwealth Extends and Expands Economic Recovery-Funded Digital Equity Programs

Thursday, December 16, 2021

WESTBOROUGH - Today, the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) at MassTech Collaborative announced the extension of several digital equity programs launched through the “Partnerships for Recovery” efforts earlier this year. Supported with $9.2 million in economic recovery funds, the MBI launched public wireless hotspots in unserved towns in western and central Massachusetts and provided digital support for job seekers provided through the Mass. Internet Connect program.

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Baker-Polito Administration Celebrates Continued Progress in Connecting "Last Mile" Communities to Broadband

Thursday, September 30, 2021

WORTHINGTON – Today, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and Housing and Economic Development Undersecretary Ashley Stolba were joined by state and local officials to celebrate continued progress toward extending high-speed internet to so called “Last Mile” towns.

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In The News: MassBroadband 123 'Middle Mile' Network Recognized by Benton Institute

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

The Commonwealth’s MassBroadband 123 middle mile network received praise in a new report by the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society. The report touted the effectiveness and importance of building open-access, middle mile networks into the Benton Institute Report Cover: "If We Build It, Will They Come? Lessons from Open-Access Middle-Mile Networks"nation’s broadband infrastructure.

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Baker-Polito Administration Launches Programs to Boost Internet Connectivity

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

SPRINGFIELD – Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced three new programs to boost internet connectivity statewide, including a subsidy program to assist job seekers in the MassHire system that are facing a technology barrier. In addition, the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) at the MassTech Collaborative will expand a WiFi hotspot program statewide, delivering free high-speed access points to Gateway Cities, helping expand internet accessibility in areas hard-hit economically by the COVID-19 pandemic. The programs are part of the $774 million economic recovery plan announced by the Administration in October, which designated $9.2 million for an expansion of internet access programs. Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, administration officials, and private partners made the announcement during an event held at the Springfield Innovation Center.

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Baker-Polito Administration Extends Wireless Hotspot Program in Unserved Massachusetts Towns

Thursday, December 3, 2020

The Baker-Polito Administration has officially extended the free wireless hotspot program launched in unserved Massachusetts towns in response to the COVID-19 public health pandemic. The existing outdoor hotspots will be extended to June 30, 2021, and in addition, the Commonwealth has offered 24 communities the option to add an indoor hotspot free of charge to provide critical connectivity over the winter months.

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Baker-Polito Administration Extends Wireless Hotspot Program in Unserved Massachusetts Towns

Monday, August 24, 2020

WESTBOROUGH – The Baker-Polito Administration has officially extended the free wireless hotspot program that has delivered public high-speed internet connections to residents and students in unserved Massachusetts towns, in response to the COVID-19 public health pandemic. The program, originally slated to end September 1st, will be extended through the end of 2020.

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WGBY’s ‘Connecting Point’ Highlights Last Mile Progress

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

The Springfield-based public television program ‘Connecting Point’ aired a segment that highlighted the progress made to connect unserved communities in Western Massachusetts.

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Grant Awarded to Extend Broadband in Egremont & Monterey

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

WESTBOROUGH – The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech) and the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) have approved a new grant to expand broadband coverage in the unserved towns of Egremont and Monterey, two of three remaining communities under the Commonwealth’s Last Mile program.

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