Easton Utilities is the recipient of a $3.1 million grant from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) to extend broadband to specific underserved locations in Talbot County. The additional funding allows the utility company to provide service to 711 locations currently unserved in Talbot County and will be incorporated into the current Connect Talbot project.
The total Connect Talbot project will provide access to service to more than 4,400 locations at an estimated cost of $45 million. To date, Easton Velocity, a division of Easton Utilities, has constructed more than 180 miles of fiber and provides access to approximately 1,200 locations throughout the county. An interactive map with all locations identified and estimated timelines can be found online at EastonVelocity.com/ConnectTalbot.
“We are making service available to approximately 20 to 40 homes on a weekly basis and are actually signing up 10 to 20 new customers every week,” says Ted L. Book, Vice President of Easton Velocity. “I give all the credit to the Velocity team, as well as the contractors who are performing at a steady pace. We are performing underground construction which is more reliable but is considerably more difficult to install.”
Easton Velocity offers a range of speeds at varying price points to ensure affordability and customized options. The company is also participating in various federal and state programs designed to help households afford the broadband service they need for work, school, healthcare, and more. There are eligibility requirements and those who qualify can receive up to $54 per month savings. More info on these programs can be found at eastonvelocity.com/internet-discount-programs.
From the onset of the rural broadband initiative, Easton Utilities has been successful in securing funding from a variety of sources including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Federal Communications Commission (FCC), State of Maryland, Talbot County Council, as well as direct investments from Easton Utilities.
“We remain committed to providing affordable access to broadband service to all residents of Talbot County who are currently unserved,” says Hugh E. Grunden, President and CEO of Easton Utilities.
While the project originally anticipated a customer contribution, last year the Talbot County Council provided funding to alleviate this requirement.
“We thank Governor Moore and his team for helping us continue our mission to bring internet service to the residents of Talbot County who need it,” says Chuck Callahan, Talbot County Council President. “This funding will help us execute the Connect Talbot project, which continues to expand.”
Easton Utilities is a community-owned, not-for-profit utility and telecommunications company operating the Electric, Natural Gas, Water, Wastewater, Cable Television, and Internet services for the Town of Easton and portions of the surrounding area. Easton Velocity, a service of Easton Utilities, is committed to keeping our community connected and current with a variety of service offerings designed to meet the needs of both residential and commercial customers. Please visit www.EastonVelocity.com/ConnectTalbot or call 410-690-4605 to learn more.