08/08/2018 - 13:57

State awards $2.3m broadband grants

08/08/2018 - 13:57

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Geraldton-based LogicIT has been awarded $1 million worth of state government grants to provide broadband coverage to farmers in the Mid West region.

State awards $2.3m broadband grants
The fund targets agricultural and pastoral regions which lie outside the current or planned NBN.

Geraldton-based LogicIT has been awarded $1 million worth of state government grants to provide broadband coverage to farmers in the Mid West region.

The first round of the government’s digital farm grants were announced today, with $2.3 million spread across six projects.

Under the program, grants of up to $500,000 are awarded on a matching co-contribution basis to cover capital costs of improving connectivity to multiple farming enterprises and associated stakeholders.

The fund targets agricultural and pastoral regions outside the current or planned National Broadband Network (NBN) fixed wireless and fixed-line footprints.

LogicIT was awarded two $500,000 grants to provide a fixed wireless network in North Midlands and Chapman Valley.

The Australian arm of Asian IT company Superloop was awarded a $500,000 grant to extend network services in the Great Southern.

Queensland-based Pivotel Group received two grants of $277,000 to improve network coverage in Mt Barker and Wickepin.

Telstra and the Shire of Dalwallinu jointly received $260,000 under the program to provide broadband services in Goodlands, 300 kilometres north-east of Perth.

Overall the scheme will extend services to more than 1,100 farming enterprises across more than 37,000 square kilometres.

Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan said regional farmers needed access to fast internet.

“The Turnbull government’s NBN has failed regional Western Australia, with the Skymuster satellite service unable to cope with the needs of modern agricultural businesses,” she said.

“We’re stepping in to fill the gap because our government understands that 21st century broadband is critical for agricultural jobs and regional development.

“The new services will be rolled out as the infrastructure is completed, providing more rural businesses and people living in the regions with a fast, reliable, affordable and scalable broadband service.”

  

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