ALBANY, N.Y. (WWTI) — New funding resources have been made available to help address the digital divide in the state.
Over $6.2 million in federal funding through the American Rescue Plan are now available to assist New York State libraries and cultural institutions break the digital divide. This funding opportunity was announced by the New York State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa on Wednesday.
“These funds will support collaborative efforts to find real and sustainable solutions to address the digital divide in New York State,” Commissioner Rosa said. “This significant investment represents meaningful progress in achieving our vision of digital equity and inclusion for our students and their families.”
According to Rosa, $5.5 million of this funding will be allocated through the State Library to the nine regional Reference and Research Library Resources Council. Rosa stated that the funding will implement three priority programs in their regions. This will include advancing digital inclusion, encouraging library/museum partnerships, and expanding student access to digital resources.
The Northern New York region will received over $300,000 of the total funding. A full break-down of the total ARPA local assistance allocations is listed below:
|Regional Library Council||Digital inclusion projects||Library and museum partnership projects||SLS Digital Resources projects||Total ARPA allocations|
|Central New York||$282,207||$41,794||$56,113||$380,115|
|Northern New York||$237,092||$27,393||$37,133||$301,618|
|Western New York||$376,861||$72,340||$53,441||$502,642|
Regional library councils will collaborate with public library systems, school library systems and other libraries, museums and cultural repositories.