FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
STROUD, OK – Sac and Fox Nation, along with Centranet LLC, was recently awarded a $35.8 million grant for the deployment of a full fiber optic network, including fiber to the home, within the tribal lands.
The grant, which was awarded by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration under the Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program, will make gigabit internet available within the tribal lands of Sac and Fox Nation.
“Tribal lands are some of the least connected territories in the U.S.,” said Angela Gasper, Acting Principal Chief, Sac and Fox Nation. “Not having access to broadband creates economic hardships and keeps us from entering the digital economy. The deployment of this new fiber optic network with Centranet LLC and the availability of high-speed broadband will make Sac and Fox Nation a gig-nation and take us into the next era of information technology.”
The fiber network will be interconnected with Centranet’s full fiber network. Centranet, an established Internet Service Providers, provides high-speed internet to parts of seven counties in north-central Oklahoma.
“Concern for community is a key guiding principle for Centranet,” said Mark Prather, President of Fiber and Technology, Centranet. “This award will help us realize our mission to provide gigabit broadband to an even broader community.”
Nearly 300 applications requesting more than $5 billion were received for the program. So far, 94 grants have been awarded; Sac and Fox Nation and Centranet being one.
“Every home, school and business in Oklahoma should have access to affordable, reliable high-speed internet,” said Kirk Martin, Interim Executive Director, Oklahoma State Broadband Office. “The mission of the State Broadband Office is to connect 95% of the state in the next five years. Partnerships like this accelerate our programs to reach that goal faster.”