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More Money For Rural Wisconsin Broadband Approved

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As part of finding funding to continue the Focus on Energy program, the state has authorized money to develop new rural programs that include expanding faster Internet in rural areas. The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin authorized the additional money to help get more services to rural Wisconsin.

PSC spokesperson Elise Nelson says the problem is getting the program to rural residents..

"....state statute requires equitable access to the Focus on Energy program for all who pay into it but the benefit per capita is disporportionately lower than customers in urban areas. The decision was about addressing this discrepancy.Commissioners agreed to use more than $45 million unallocated dollars to develop new rural programs for both biodigesters and to explore how broadband might play a role in improving energy efficiency and removing barriers to energy efficiency in rural areas...."

What this means is a faster development of high speed internet than what has been planned. Nelson says incorporating broadband into Focus on Energy delivery will make it more cost effective and efficient she says. She says it will free up more than $7 million dollars in renewable energy resources.

Focus on Energy is Wisconsin utilities’ statewide energy efficiency and renewable resource program. Since 2001, the program has worked with eligible Wisconsin residents and businesses to install cost-effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

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