Governor Walker announced changes to the BadgerNet Converged Network (BCN) contracts today as well as new grant opportunities within the TEACH program.
Governor Walker announced the following changes aimed at increasing capacity and lowering costs:
- Starting November 1, 2016 current BCN customers will see a 7% decrease in costs on their current BCN service rates at 1.5 megabytes per second and above.
- Once the new contracts take effect in February, customers will have access to higher bandwidth and lower costs due to the new negotiated rates. Walker says that once upgrades are made, the total for BCN customers will exceed 400 gigabytes of capacity compared to the current 90 gigabytes of installed bandwidth capacity.
- TEACH educational agencies are eligible for a bandwidth increase at no additional cost. This change retroactively took effect on July 1, 2016.
- The Department of Administration is now accepting applications for $9 million worth of TEACH grants. Up to $1.5 million is available for Teacher Training Grants for Educational Technology and $7.5 million is available in Information Technology Infrastructure grants.
“The new broadband contract we’re announcing today dramatically improves the quality of service to users. Schools and local governments throughout Wisconsin will have the ability to utilize this contract and potentially save money. Ultimately, this enhances the quality of education for our students, as well as the quality of local government services for our taxpayers," said Walker in a statement issued by his office.
Read Walker's full announcement here.