Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:19 pm
Four area nonprofits will receive grants to help them bolster access to telecommunication services for low-income people and individuals with disabilities, Gov. Scott Walker announced today.
Walker and the Public Service Commission announced the recipients of Universal Service Fund grants, aimed at supporting nonprofit programs and projects that improve access to telecommunications services.
Area nonprofits receiving grants include:
- West Allis-based HEAR Wisconsin Store: $10,675 to provide outreach, co-payment assistance and in-home visits to ensure equal access to the Telecommunications Equipment Purchase Program and provide training and follow-up support to clients who require captioned telephone service.
- Milwaukee-based New Concept Self Development Center: $22,200 to provide continuous access to telecommunications services to low-income community residents during evenings and weekends.
- Milwaukee-based Vision Forward Association, Inc.: $29,100 to provide access to and training on state-of-the-art cell phones and smartphones to individuals who are blind or visually impaired and help them maintain their independence.
- YWCA Southeast Wisconsin: $42,230 to provide telecommunications access and resource assistance for at least 750 low-income individuals in Milwaukee and Racine Counties.
The Universal Service Fund is collected via fees from telecommunication providers. The PSC may award up to $500,000 annually to nonprofits.
“We are committed to using all the tools at our disposal to help boost broadband service,” Walker said. “The funds allocated by PSC today will help some of the states’ most vulnerable access telecommunications equipment and internet service.”
The PSC also will provide $350,000 in funding for eight Independent Living Centers throughout the state, which provide support services to individuals with disabilities to ensure access to telecommunications services.