County Board approves $1.75 million for Broadband Infrastructure Grants

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Planning & Community Development Department • Government Services Center

320 West Second Street, Suite 301 • Duluth, MN 55802

Phone: (218) 725-5000 • Toll Free in Minnesota: 1 (800) 450-9777 


Matthew E. Johnson





August 10, 2021

MEDIA CONTACT: Brad Gustafson

Senior Planner, Planning & Community Development Department



County Board approves $1.75 million for Broadband Infrastructure Grants

The St. Louis County Board today gave unanimous support to invest $1.75 million in Broadband Infrastructure Grants. The grants will be distributed to qualifying communities to assist with constructing broadband infrastructure in unserved or underserved areas. This latest investment is in addition to $250,000 authorized last month to assist communities with broadband planning costs. Funding for the Broadband Infrastructure Grants comes from the federal American Rescue Plan Act money the county received.


Communities may apply for assistance up to $400,000 and requires an equal financial match. Eligible project costs include architectural and engineering fees, consulting costs and services, personnel costs, surveys, construction costs, broadband equipment, and similar costs associated with broadband infrastructure construction. Applications will be reviewed on an on-going basis subject to grant funding availability. 


"One of the top priorities I consistently hear from my constituents and from people throughout the county relates to broadband," said Commissioner Paul McDonald, whose district spans the entire northern half of the county and much of the eastern portion. "We know larger federal and state solutions are needed, but this is a first step in supporting our cities and townships, as well as providers, in their efforts to bring broadband service to residents and businesses."


The St. Louis County Planning and Community Development Department will hold a virtual meeting on Thursday, August 12, from 9-10 a.m. to provide an overview of the Broadband Infrastructure Grant program. All interested stakeholders are encouraged to participate.


More information on the broadband grants and the meeting can be found online at Anyone with comments or questions can email 



Additionally, St. Louis County is looking for input from residents regarding their current home Internet subscription, and their use of and satisfaction with current broadband services. People without a home broadband subscription are also encouraged to provide that information. The survey can be found at: