The County Commission met for a work session yesterday at noon. High-speed internet was the main topic of discussion.
The county will apply for an $11 million grant from the State of Tennessee for a broadband internet project in the South end of the county in 2023.
Last October, the County was awarded an $8 million grant and the Commission approved a project that will bring a high-speed intranet to the north end of the county.
Volunteer Electric Cooperative (VEC) attended yesterday’s meeting to discuss the progress of the project covered with the $8 million grant already approved by the Commission. They also discussed the timeline for the South end area project, should the $11 million grant be awarded to the County in 2023.
According to estimates and plans presented by VEC, work will begin in 2023 and should conclude in the first quarter of 2024, not withstanding any unforeseen circumstances.
If the county receives the grant, it is estimated that 75% of Bradley County will have access to high-speed internet once the work is completed.
The Mayor estimates that if the current broadband plan comes to fruition with grants, private investment, and approvals from the commission on the projects, Bradley County will be getting approximately $23 million in broadband projects for a cost of around $4 million.
The County Commission will meet next Tuesday, where they will be voting on matching funds needed from the county to complete the projects.