Madden: American Rescue Plan funds additional hotspots for Eastern Monroe Public Library
MONROE, Oct. 4 – With funding that will literally keep constituents connected, state Rep. Maureen Madden announced a $24,696 Emergency Connectivity Fund grant for the Eastern Monroe Public Library.
According to Library Director Susan Lyons, the funding will be used to dramatically increase the number of mobile hotspots Eastern Monroe lends out to members of the community. The library currently has 30 hotspots that were purchased via library fundraiser, but it will soon add 40 more for use by local residents.
"The resources and services Eastern Monroe Public Library offers, including increased connectivity for area residents, create opportunities for learning and for personal growth," Madden said. "The library supports literacy and education for constituents, and I know it takes a lot more than a substantial amount of reading material for a library to function properly. I'm so glad this funding will make a very real and immediate impact for this popular hotspot program."
Added Lyons: "This program is incredibly popular, so much so that we've had more demand for these hotspots than we've been able to supply. With this grant, that will hopefully change very soon, as we're expecting to receive 40 new hotspots this week. Those who check out the hotspots, which have about a gigabyte of bandwidth, use them to connect to the internet, where they and their families can do research for school projects and for new job opportunities, or for entertainment purposes, or anything in between. It's been really important for people to stay connected during this pandemic."
The Pennsylvania Department of Education announced the award late last week. The ECF is a $7.17 billion program and was created through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to ensure students have access to digital devises and resources they need for the school year and to help libraries offer their patrons internet connectivity and digital devises for those who have unmet needs at home.
For more information, visit the ECF website. To apply for funding, visit emergencyconnectivityfund.org.