State gets $2 million to map broadband service

The federal government has awarded a $2 million grant to the state of Kansas to create a map of broadband service and a plan for how to improve it.

The state has hired non-profit ConnectedNation to actually do the work. The map must be done by 2011 and the planning by 2012.

The matching federal grant was made possible by grants of $185,000 from Information Network of Kansas and $15,000 from Kansas Farm Bureau.

The mapping and planning grant for Kansas and the other states is the smaller part of the $7.2 billion from the federal stimulus package to extend broadband access. The larger part of the money will be grants to companies and non-profit groups, including several from Wichita, with different proposals.

Those grants are expected to be awarded this month.