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New Indiana Connectivity Program to Launch Next Week

STATEHOUSE (Sept. 21, 2021) – Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs today announced a new program aiming to help more Hoosiers obtain access to reliable and quality broadband.

Homeowners and business owners can apply for consideration for the Indiana Connectivity Program, which opens for applicants on Monday, Sept. 27. This new tool can connect residents and businesses that lack internet service with internet service providers and assist in the expense of extending broadband to unserved and underserved locations.

"The Indiana Connectivity Program aims to bring high quality broadband service to unserved and underserved Hoosiers," Crouch said. "The last year and a half has shined a light on the severe importance of having everyone connected. This program is a path to bring service to households and businesses that are in internet darkness or have speeds that are not meeting the demands on our students who are eLearning or our workforce teleworking."

Beginning Monday, Sept. 27, 2021, Hoosiers and business owners lacking internet connectivity can communicate their interest by entering their address and information into the Next Level Connections portal at in.gov/ocra/broadband.

Hoosiers can also initiate interest by calling the Indiana Broadband Connect Center, which is open on business days from from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., ET, starting Monday, Sept. 27. Hoosiers can reach the call center at 833-639-8522.

"Through this program, we can help more Hoosiers, especially those in rural areas, have better access to quality internet service,” said OCRA Executive Director Denny Spinner. “The Indiana Connectivity Program is one more step toward expanding broadband accessibility to all corners of Indiana.”

To be eligible, a location must have access to actual speeds of less than 25 Mbps (download) and 3 Mbps (upload). Inputting location information into the Next Level Connections Broadband portal does not guarantee extension of service.

Eligible locations submitted will be available to service providers within 90 days. Next Level Connections Broadband Program funding may be available to assist in expanding internet opportunities to these locations, following a 60-day bidding process. Once awarded, providers must complete their projects within nine months of the contract date.

For more information, visit in.gov/ocra/broadband/icp


Initiative Expands Access to Research and Innovation Funding in Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 12, 2021) — Elevate Ventures today announced the full launch of the Innovation Voucher Program, providing Indiana startups access to funding for more innovation-driven research and product development capabilities.

The Indiana Voucher Program was initially established in 2019 by legislation and administered primarily by the Indiana Economic Development Corp. (IEDC). Elevate Ventures’ partnership with IEDC on the program will focus on Indiana-based startups with demonstrated business needs and continued high-growth potential. Startups may be eligible for up to $50,000 in services from qualified Indiana higher education institutions and authorized nonprofit research providers to support research and development, product development, and commercialization.

“Elevate Ventures has a track record of supporting Indiana-based startups through both programmatic engagements and pre-seed, seed and early-stage grant or investment funds,” said Ting Gootee, Elevate Ventures chief investment officer. “We are excited to have this particular program in our management portfolio and look forward to leveraging it toward the highest impact on our entrepreneurship community.”

The program will be open to applications a few times a year. The current application is open through Sept. 17, 2021. For full eligibility details, click here. To apply for Innovation Voucher Program funding, please click here.

COVID-19 Grants Available for Specialty Crop Growers

The Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA), beginning Sept. 1, will seek project proposals from Indiana’s specialty crop industry for funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Specialty Crop Block Grant Program. This special round of funding is provided by congressional COVID-19 stimulus funding. Eligible projects must provide industry relief for the impact of COVID-19 and enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops in Indiana, defined as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, horticulture and nursery crops.

“This additional funding is a welcomed surprise from USDA for our specialty crop growers,” said Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch. “I am looking forward to this agriculture sector advancing research, market development, education and training as well as seeing how this industry will best mitigate COVID-19 risks.”

The USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant Program offers federal funding annually to the state departments of agriculture to support their specialty crop industries. USDA has allocated an additional $644,100 to Indiana for this program this year.

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Federal Eviction Moratorium

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention federal eviction moratorium will expire on July 31st. Funding is available to help renters in Indiana who have been impacted by the pandemic and who need assistance with their rent and/or utilities.

The Indiana Emergency Rental Assistance program may provide up to 12 months of rental and utility assistance.  Renters in need assistance may apply directly based on their community’s program.  

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau launched an online tool to help renters and landlords find their assistance programs. If you are unsure which program you might be eligible for, click HERE

Community ERA Programs and Websites 

Report a Pothole or Dangerous Road Condition on a Floyd County Road

The Floyd County Highway Department is responsible for the repair of all Floyd County bridges and patching of all county roads and highways. If you would like to report a pothole or a hazardous road condition on a Floyd County Road please click on the link below for more information. 

Please Note: For roads within the City of New Albany please contact the City. 

Click here to make a report to the Floyd County Highway Department

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