MBI Broadband Last Mile Project Guide

About the MBI

Created in 2008, the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) is a division of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, which is a state quasi-public agency. It operates with an executive director and staff, and is governed by a nine-member board of directors, five of whom are ex-officio and four are appointed by the Governor. (www.broadband.masstech.org/) The MBI is charged by the Massachusetts Governor and State Legislature with helping expand broadband in areas lacking access, in order that our residents, businesses, and organizations can compete more fully in the global digital economy. The MBI built and owns MassBroadband 123, a 1,200-mile Middle Mile fiber network that provides the essential platform for last mile service expansion.

About the Last Mile Program

In 2014, the Legislature appropriated state capital funds to the MBI for a program that develops broadband last mile solutions, including a $40 Million investment to support Last Mile broadband service in the 45 communities lacking any residential cable or broadband access. The Last Mile Program will partner with interested municipalities on innovative, sustainable, locally-led strategies to extend broadband access. In early 2015, Governor Baker announced his Administration’s commitment to supporting the Last Mile Program and partnering with the MBI and participating towns. The primary project of the Last Mile Program involves development and construction of a fiber-to-the-home network for interested towns, though towns can be eligible for assistance and financial support for additional qualifying projects and solutions. The Last Mile Program also involves working with the leadership of towns with cable franchises that cover a portion of these municipalities (‘partial-cable towns’), as well as the private providers that serve these municipalities, to find ways to close the broadband gaps in these regions

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