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Georgia Seal


Friday, May 19, 2006  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774

Governor Perdue Announces Funding for Wireless Broadband Networks

ATLANTA – Governor Sonny Perdue announced today the availability of funding to assist local communities to establish wireless broadband networks through the Wireless Communities Georgia Program.

The program will provide funding to at least three communities. At Governor Perdue’s request, the General Assembly appropriated funds for the program during the 2006 legislative session. A total of $4 million is available. The program is managed by the Georgia Technology Authority.

“Broadband is the new dial tone for the 21st century,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “We cannot imagine any business, much less an entire community, operating without access to reliable telephone service. Today, broadband Internet access is just as important to our communications infrastructure.”

A separate program managed by the OneGeorgia Authority will provide $5 million to rural communities seeking to establish broadband networks of any kind.

The programs are part of Governor Perdue’s commitment to ensure the availability of broadband connections in every Georgia community. The deployment of high-speed networks is designed to:

  • Promote economic development;
  • Expand educational opportunities; and
  • Improve the availability and efficiency of government services.

The Wireless Communities Georgia Program will accept applications from city and county governments and local government authorities. Funding recipients will be required to provide a minimum of 25 percent of a project’s total cost. Priority will be given to networks operated by a private-sector company. Local and state government agencies are expected to be “anchor tenants” of the wireless network.

Applications for funding and complete details about the wireless program are available from the Georgia Technology Authority at www.gta.georgia.gov/wcg. The applications will be evaluated by technology and business managers from several state agencies. The deadline for submitting applications is July 7, 2006. Decisions about funding will be announced by September 1, 2006.

A free workshop for cities and counties interested in applying for funding from the Wireless Communities Georgia Program will be hosted on Monday, June 5, 2006, by the Georgia Technology Authority to educate communities about these types of projects.

The workshop will be led by Civitium, which specializes in wireless technology. It will give an overview of Wi-Fi and wireless technology; educate attendees about applications, policies and potential roadblocks; and describe economics and metrics necessary to manage a Wi-Fi network.

The workshop is designed for project managers/sponsors and lead technical managers. It will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Capitol Education Center, 180 Central Avenue, Atlanta.

Interested communities can also participate in the workshop by videoconference at the following locations:

  • Albany, 1700 Radium Springs Road
  • Athens, 1130 Mitchell Bridge Road
  • Augusta, 1832 Wylds Road
  • Columbus, 7206 Schomburg Road
  • Milledgeville, 164 Swint Avenue
  • Rome, 500 Riverside Parkway
  • Savannah, 9104 Middleground Road

To register, interested participants should e-mail their name and contact information to wcg@gta.ga.gov. Each city or county is asked to send no more than two representatives.

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