EVENT: June 11 Blandin Broadband Communities vision meeting with Le Sueur County

Le Sueur County News reports…

Le Sueur County is inviting the public to help develop broadband projects in the county at Blandin Broadband Community Vision and Brainstorm meetings.  At these meetings, priorities will be determined and projects developed to improve Internet access and use in Le Sueur.

Le Sueur County was named one of five new Blandin Broadband Communities (BBC) in January 2020. The BBC program provides planning, technical and financial support to communities that demonstrate the determination to bring the benefits of a broadband-enabled economy to their communities. The new communities will each have access to a $75,000 grant, but projects will have to meet Blandin Foundation standards in order to be funded. Successful projects in other communities have focused business technology websites and incubators, technology camps for school kids, online job training, and community marketing.

Due to COVID-19, Blandin Foundation has revised this program to be completely online. The process will use a combination of surveys and Zoom meetings to set goals and develop projects rather than the more traditional on-site process that Blandin Foundation has used in 40 other communities over the years. To participate, residents should go online to: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/QJKS9JY to complete an initial community survey. They can then choose to register for one or both of the two online interactive meetings. The Vision meeting will be June 11 at 1pm with the follow-up Brainstorm meeting on June 17 at 10am. Following the online meetings, community members will have a chance through a follow-up community survey to vote for and even volunteer for project teams to be led by various community organizations.

The Le Sueur County Blandin Broadband Community project is sponsored by Le Sueur County. Le Sueur County has been working for the past three years to advocate for improved broadband access across the county. Last year Bevcomm was awarded $1.8 million from State of Minnesota Border to Border grant program for improved internet access in Le Sueur County and planning is underway for 2020 grant funds. A community survey at https://www.co.le-sueur.mn.us/386/Le-Sueur-County-Broadband-Initiative has had over 700 responses about the need improved access.

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