CTUIR receives $25,000 grant for Tribal Broadband Project

MISSION, OR – The Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) received a $25,000 grant from the First Nations Development Institute of Longmont, Colorado. The award will support the CTUIR Tribal Broadband Project by providing funding for a fixed based wireless system on the Umatilla Indian Reservation.

The funding will help with the construction costs cost for two wireless towers which will connect to the CTUIR fiber optic network system. In addition, the CTUIR will have an operational fixed base wireless system to serve residences in the Tutuilla area.

“Reliable internet has always been a goal of the Tribe. Building out this infrastructure is important for all of our reservation,” said Kat Brigham, Chair of the Board of Trustees “The pandemic helped us realize it is a vital utility and should be available to everyone.”

In 2020, Tribes installed more than seven miles of buried fiber optic cable in the initial phase of the Tribal Broadband Project on the reservation. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) granted the CTUIR a 2.5 GHz (gigahertz) spectrum license which allows for the operation of a licensed fixed base wireless system.

This spring, the Tribe filed an application with the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) and was awarded more than a thousand IP addresses and an Internet Service Provider (ISP) number, which will allow the Tribes to operate as an independent ISP on the Reservation.

The Department of Economic and Community Development is responsible for the Tribal Broadband project and will manage the new grant. The grant comes from the Building Digital Technology Capacity in Native American Communities Project. For more information visit: https://www.firstnations.org.