(Hartford, CT) In the second year of grants, the State Library Board recently approved a $22,950.00 grant to the Gunn Memorial Public Library for high-speed fiber connections to the Connecticut Education Network (CEN). Public libraries serve as critical gateways to information outside one’s own community. In the Information Age, this role has become even more important. Libraries give people without home computers free access to the Internet, helping residents close the digital divide. As reliance upon public libraries to provide broadband telecommunications services for their community increases, it becomes essential to have universal high-speed connectivity in libraries across the state.
This brings to 57 the total number of libraries that have received grants totaling $1,157,273. In 2015, the General Assembly appropriated $3,600,000 for Grants-in-Aid for high-speed connections to the Connecticut Education Network (P.A. 15-1 Sec. 13(j)(2)). On May 27, 2016 the State Bond Commission approved an allocation and bond authorization to the State Library for $3.6 million for high-speed library connections to the Connecticut Education Network for more than 90 libraries in Connecticut.
The grant covers all of the costs related to installing the fiber connection to the library. It is anticipated that the connections will be completed in the first half of 2018. The State Library Board is expected to award another round of grants in January.
The Connecticut State Library is an Executive Branch agency of the State of Connecticut. The Division of Library Development provides leadership, funding, education, and statewide services that enhance a local library’s ability to deliver high-quality library service to their community. Learn more about the State Library and Division of Library Development at: www.ctstatelibrary.org and http://libguides.ctstatelibrary.org/DLD/home http://libguides.ctstatelibrary.org/DLD/home or follow the State Library on twitter.com/LibraryofCT and facebook.com/CTStateLibrary
Additional information about the project can be found at http://libguides.ctstatelibrary.org/dld/erate/faq