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Economic Director Phillip Smart seeks partnership with V1Fiber to get citizens high-speed broadband

Minden’s Economic Director Phillip Smart is seeking to bring Minden online by partnering with V1Fiber to bring high speed broadband to the city’s residents and businesses.

The agreement that Smart is requesting to be on the City Council’s June Agenda would allow V1 to seek out federal grants on behalf of the city that would fund projects to upgrade wifi infrastructure. 

V1 is a company that specializes in engineering and constructing telecommunication services. This agreement allows them to acquire the funding necessary to start a project as costly installing fibre.

“This is for us to acquire grant funds to install “Wi-Fi” to help promote quality of life, industrial growth, free to low cost internet for K-12 students, distance learning, telehealth, telecommunications, telemedicine, public safety, and digital equality,” said Smart.

The City will get the benefit of not only having new access to high speed internet, but also to decide whether to get a provider for the services, or provide internet services themselves, opening up a new avenue for the city to acquire revenue.

However, time is of the essence, seeing as funds allocated for broadband project grants is limited. With the COVID pandemic shining a light on the importance of WiFi connectivity, there is sure to be other applicants competing for these grants as well.

“I have requested that this be added to the June agenda, since Federal funding is limited,” said Smart.

“This past year has shown everyone the necessity of internet access. This agreement can be the first step that the City takes to really show it’s residents and businesses that we see that need for internet connectivity and are taking the actions necessary to make, easy, affordable, high speed broadband a reality here in Minden.