Applications from 58 Parishes for GUMBO Grants
BATON ROUGE — From the Louisiana House of Representatives:
The latest effort to bridge the digital divide delivered promising responses for round one of Louisiana’s Granting Unserved Municipalities Broadband Opportunities Fund grant program. Applications requesting more than $400 million in funding came from local governments within 58 parishes across Louisiana.
“The GUMBO Fund will allow countless Louisianans to participate in the global economy while improving access to tele-healthcare and educational opportunity,” said Rep. Daryl Deshotel (R-Avoyelles), the legislative architect of the program. “This is one of the greatest economic development opportunities in the history of Louisiana.”
The GUMBO Fund, authored by Rep. Deshotel, was enacted during the 2021 Regular Legislative Session. On November 1st, the program began receiving round one applications for the $90 million in funding. This March, the awards will be announced and construction will begin as soon as May.
“I’m so proud to see that our local governments recognized the need for this program, decided to partner with private companies and applied for the GUMBO grant,” said Rep. Deshotel. “When I began to work on this fund, I knew it was a once in a lifetime opportunity for the people of Louisiana. While I knew we had a limited window of opportunity, I am proud of how successful and transformative this program has proven to be.”
“I am committed to working with industries, local governments and my colleagues to ensure every penny of this program is spent investing in broadband infrastructure that will improve the lives of our people and grow our economy,” continued Rep. Deshotel. “This is only the beginning of our work, but I am hopeful for the future of our great state.
The second round of applications will begin in July.