Millions of dollars heading to improving internet for Kansans

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KANSAS — Millions of dollars are heading toward improving internet for Kansans.

Lawmakers approved $60 million for internet connectivity needs. It will help rural areas without service and improve speeds for communities with slow internet.

It’s part of one billion dollars Kansas received from the federal government.

Fifty million will go toward getting infrastructure in place in order to access the internet.

And ten million dollars will help low income Kansans pay.

Stanley Adams, Dept of Commerce, said, “This funding that was approved today, honestly is a big step in the right direction for us, because we will be able to make some immediate impacts.”

Lyle Butler, Spark Taskforce, said, “We’ve got to connect our schoolchildren so that they have access should we have to go back to online and at the same time telemedicine is just becoming more and more important.”

The state has nearly $300 million more in federal coronavirus relief to distribute.

With congress fighting about what to include in a new stimulus plan, and the President putting out new executive orders, that can impact where the money will go.

Money could be sent to local governments, schools, state departments, or to help businesses, or replenish the state unemployment fund.

“There’s no shortage of where we need to put money. If fact, we will not have enough money to meet all the needs that are out there, so it’s a difficult task in trying to determine what is best.

Kansas has already spent $676 million toward economic development, public health, and for state and local government.

The state has until the end of the year to decide how to spend the federal tax money.

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