August 24, 2023

Wyden, Merkley: Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians Earns Federal Investment in Upgraded Broadband

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians has secured a $482,325 federal grant to improve broadband service for its Tribal lands in southwest Oregon.

“Federal investment in fast and dependable broadband is a must-do infrastructure priority, and those resources must include Tribal communities in Oregon and nationwide,” said Wyden, who earlier this year successfully fought to correct inaccuracies in the National Broadband Map that would have cost Oregon hundreds of millions of dollars in grants. “I’m gratified the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians has earned these federal dollars, and I’ll keep working to ensure all of Oregon’s Tribal communities have that same broadband investment to link families to health care, children to school resources, and workers to good-paying jobs.”

“In today’s connected world, access to the internet is crucial, and every rural and Tribal community across Oregon and America needs and deserves access to affordable, reliable high-speed broadband,” Merkley said. “This important infrastructure investment will support critical broadband access for the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, which will only help to strengthen the future success of the community.”

The federal investment in the Cow Creek from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s tribal broadband connectivity program will lead to an engineering, regulatory, and design plan for new broadband that enables effective wireless delivery of ?25 megabits per second when downloading and three megabits per second when uploading. The tribal connectivity program offers grants to eligible Native American, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian entities for high-speed internet deployment, digital inclusion, workforce development, telehealth, and distance learning.

“The Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians is honored to receive the National Telecommunications and Information Administration broadband grant award of $482,325,” said Carla Keene, Chairman of the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians. “The funds will be used to develop shovel-ready projects in southern Douglas County, Oregon that in the future will bring broadband access to Tribal member housing and improved connectivity for all residents in this rural area. The projects will support Cow Creek Umpqua Tribal members with reliable broadband for improved education and participation, as well as access to critical services in an underserved community. The projects will be the basis for future investments with a goal of reaching all Tribal members in the region by providing them a pathway to digital engagement.”