Broadband Update: FCC Accepting Correction Challenges for New National Broadband Map

On Friday, November 18th the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) unveiled the “pre-production draft” of the new national broadband map. This new map is the most detailed and current federal map of where broadband is and is not accessible throughout the country.

What information is included on the map?
The map displays address-level availability and data (as self-reported by internet service providers) for fixed and mobile broadband as well as data aggregated to larger areas – e.g., state, county, census place, and congressional district. Data can be examined by exploring the map’s digital interface or by searching by state or address. The map also displays coverage data by provider.

How does this affect you and your community?
In cases where the draft broadband map indicates broadband speeds that are not actually being observed at specific locations, it is important to challenge the results being presented on the map. Failure to do so could jeopardize a community’s ability to secure a portion of the more than $42 Billion set aside for broadband expansion under the Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) program. Simply put, if the speeds indicated on the map are incorrect for a location and you want to improve local broadband access, it is very important to challenge the results.

How to submit a challenge/ correction:
The FCC is seeking help to improve the data on the map by asking communities and individuals to submit a challenge or request a correction. These are 3 types of challenges: availability challenges, mobile availability challenges, and location challenges. More information on the challenge process can be found on the, How to Use the FCC’s National Broadband Map help page.  

How does this affect you and your community?
In cases where the draft broadband map indicates broadband speeds that are not being observed at specific locations, it is important to challenge the results being presented on the map. Failure to do so could jeopardize a community’s ability to secure a portion of the more than $42 billion set aside for broadband expansion under the Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) program.  

Due Date
To ensure valid challenges are incorporated into the map before federal funding allocations are made, the public are encouraged to submit challenges by January 13, 2023.

Source: Public Service Commission of Wisconsin

WCLO: Rock County Jumpstart hosts Black Business Month luncheon

WCLO Your Talk LogoWCLO

Rock County’s black businesses accelerator is highlighting the good work done by local individuals to foster the growth of Black and Latino-owned businesses.

Rock County Jumpstart Executive Director Genia Stevens says Madison Region Economic Partnership President and CEO Jason Fields will be the keynote speaker for the annual Black Business Luncheon.

Stevens says the event will take place at noon on August 12th at the Beloit Historical Society.

Stevens says several awards will be given out, including the Legacy Award, Business of the Year, Lotus Award, Peer Mentor of the Year, and Mentor of the Year.

While the tickets – which include lunch from Backyard Barbecue – are free, they do need to be reserved in advance on the Rock County Jump Start website.

Originally published on

Top Ten | WalletHub | 2022’s Best & Worst Places to Raise a Family

Source: WalletHub

WalletHub recently ranked Madison #9 in their Top Ten on the 2022 list of Best & Worst Places to Raise a Family. 

Source: WalletHub

With family needs in mind, WalletHub compared more than 180 U.S. cities based on 46 key metrics that consider essential family dynamics, such as the cost of housing, the quality of local school and health-care systems, and the opportunities for fun and recreation.

Families move often and for various reasons. In fact, the average American can expect to move an estimated 11.7 times in a lifetime. Moving can be a sign of opportunity, such as a new job or long-term wealth accumulation, but people may also move because of instability such as foreclosure or job loss. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, families will likely be looking for cities that provide the most safety and have the lowest unemployment rates.


Business Facilities | STEM Leaders: This Will Be On The Test

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Business Facilities | Nora Caley

Madison, WI: Helping Students Get An Early Start

To help students discover if STEM courses interest them, in 2015 the Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP) launched Inspire Madison Region, a software component of the web-based program Xello, which the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) made available to all public school districts. While Xello allows students to learn about specific occupations based on interests and abilities, the Inspire Madison Region component enables students to connect via the interactive platform with mentors and career coaches. Students also participate in job shadowing, internships, and apprenticeships at local employers.

“Through the connections Inspire provides, MadREP is facilitating student awareness of local career opportunities and growing the future workforce in the Madison region,” said Gene Dalhoff, Vice President of Talent and Education. Through Inspire Madison Region, 70,000 students can connect with 500 career coaches as well as over 400 companies, many of which offer career-based learning experiences for students.

Another MadREP and Wisconsin DPI program, Wisconsin Pathways—Madison Region, is a region-wide effort to deliver high-quality career pathways in high schools. The pathways focus on occupations associated with high-skill, in-demand industry sectors. Students complete a pathway by taking a sequence of aligned courses, earning an industry-recognized credential, enrolling in dual college credit classes, participating in career-based and work-based learning experiences, and accessing related Career and Technical Education (CTE) student organizations.

Dalhoff said the pathways offer benefits for high school students and for employers. Students gain education and training that align with the needs of the local job market, and a high school diploma with at least one industry-recognized credential. Employers gain partnerships with a greater number of schools.

Another recent effort is the expansion of Fabrication Laboratories (Fab Labs) in school districts throughout the Madison Region. Fab Labs provide the physical space, equipment, instruction, teamwork, and other resources necessary for students to explore STEM-related topics and engage in projects.

MadREP is working to engage with even more students in the region. “Looking to the future, we will prioritize growing opportunities to support the BIPOC community through economic development strategies and policies that prioritize funding STEM-related endeavors,” said Jason M. Fields, MadREP’s President and CEO. “Students of color need to see themselves reflected in the industry to believe it is possible.”

Originally published on

Daily Citizen | New Horicon business park set to open

Daily Citizen | Kelly Simon

HORICON — Marshland Crossing Business Park makes its debut in Horicon next week more than six years after its inception.

Situated on the far western edge of Horicon, the property features direct access to State Highway 33, over 66 shovel-ready acres of developable land and potential rail connectivity.

The Horicon City Council approved the creation of a new industrial park in July 2016.

The city purchased a 40-acre plot from Cynthia Wrucke, located at W5326 Highway 33, for the purpose of creating a new industrial park. The Horicon Community Development Corporation purchased three separate 40-acre plots from Wrucke in December 2015.

At that time, City Clerk/Treasurer Kristen Jacobson said Horicon couldn’t attract new industrial business because of a lack of available space.

“The city is currently out of vacant land in our industrial park except for a three-acre plot,” she said.

The land was annexed by the city of Horicon from the town of Oak Grove and rezoned to limited industrial and heavy industrial land from prime agricultural land.

The property was also added into the Tax Increment District No. 5, which was created in 2015 to help with the John Deere expansion on East Lake Street.

According to Jacobson, Horicon has completed multiple studies on the site to determine its true development potential and, in partnership with Dodge County, the site received Gold Shovel site verification from Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP) in 2021.

Former Mayor Jim Grigg said the project picked up speed in 2021.

“We had approval from the state to put in two inlets and turning lanes along the highway and got that done last summer,” he said.

He said there have been discussions on and off with a couple of interested parties this past year but no signatures were put on paper.

The business park is available for a mix of uses including: manufacturing, warehousing, corporate, restaurant, multifamily, healthcare, and hotel or retail. The city is offering TIF assistance, as well as assistance with utility extensions, site improvements, infrastructure and reduction in land price.

The property is now featured on multiple nationwide site selector websites including MadREP and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.’s LocateInWisconsin website.

On Tuesday, May 24, at 5 p.m., a ribbon cutting ceremony open to the public will take place at the property to unveil the new signage.

More information on Marshland Crossing is available at

Article originally published on

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