Tribe, MaxxSouth increasing broadband role
The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians is growing its partnership with MaxxSouth Broadband, whereby their existing broadband system is being expanded to serve over 2,000 tribal homes in six of the eight Tribal communities. Earlier this year, the Tribe announced that it had received an $8.43 million Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program (TBCP) grant award from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) that will provide funding for much needed internet access across Choctaw Tribal lands. The funding from the grant award will be used in part towards the Tribe’s partnership with MaxxSouth Broadband.
“With many school, business and service operations now being conducted online, the need for broadband internet access is more important than ever,” said Tribal Chief Cyrus Ben. “Access to adequate internet service in some Choctaw Tribal communities is limited at best. We recognize the need and have been making great strides to provide solutions for Tribal households.”
“I am pleased to share a partnership between the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians and MaxxSouth to bridge the gap in internet connection availability to the Tribal communities that are only partially connected or have no internet service availability at all,” continued Chief Ben. “This partnership will greatly benefit our Tribal households by expanding broadband internet service across our Tribal lands.”
John Wuerdeman, Vice President/GM of MaxxSouth Broadband added, “MaxxSouth prides itself on being one of the leaders in broadband throughout Northeast Mississippi and is excited to be in this great partnership with the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians bringing world-class fiber to homes in the tribal communities.”
Construction has already begun in the Red Water, Bogue Chitto and Standing Pine communities. Homes in Red Water and Bogue Chitto have been released to sales for home installation. Home installations for Standing Pine are scheduled to begin soon. Construction for Conehatta, Tucker and Pearl River will begin later in the year, with plans to be completed by April 2023, if not sooner, due to quicker than anticipated completion of work by additional crews secured by MaxxSouth.
When completed in 2023, tribal homes who qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) through MaxxSouth Broadband will have access to a 650MB/sec broadband service at minimal to no charge per month, an unprecedented achievement for Indian Country. Tribal homes interested in this program and want to check their eligibility can call 662.728.8111 or go to MaxxSouth.com/ACPINFO.