Haslam snubs EPB with broadband expansion plan that won't include city-owned utilities

Gig City - EPB
photo Republican Gov. Bill Haslam speaks at the state Capitol in Nashville, Tenn., on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, about his plan to boost transportation funding while also cutting taxes. Haslam's plan would hike gas taxes by 7 cents per gallon. (AP Photo/Erik Schelzig)

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Gov. Bill Haslam today announced a plan, called the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act, to expand broadband into underserved rural areas today.

The Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act looks to provide $45 million over three years in grants and tax credits for service providers to help make broadband available to unserved homes and businesses. The plan will also allow Tennessee's private, nonprofit electric cooperatives to provide retail broadband service and make grant funding available to the state's local libraries to help residents improve their digital literacy skills and maximize the benefits of broadband.