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Internet funding rule could favor rural areas over cities

Maine (AP) — Officials in some urban areas are raising concerns about a federal rule limiting how federal coronavirus relief money can be spent on high-speed internet. The American Rescue Plan signed by President Joe Biden lists broadband infrastructure as one of the uses for $350 billion of flexible aid to states, counties and cities. A rule from the Treasury Department focuses eligibility on areas lacking upload speeds of at least 25 megabits per second and download speeds of 3Mbps. That makes many remote, rural areas eligible. But cities and urban counties say that will make it difficult for them to use the money for neighborhoods that need upgrades. They want the Treasury to broaden eligibility.