Blue Sky Net to improve Northern Ontario rural broadband connectivity

NORTH BAY – Blue Sky Net has received $1.9 million in federal government funding that will help families and businesses in rural and Indigenous northern communities see enhanced information and communications technology (ICT) through the region, including Manitoulin Island. 

Blue Sky Net (BSN) has received $1.9 million in federal funding, as announced by Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Anthony Rota on September 6. 

FedNor funding will assist Blue Sky Net in delivering two projects designed to help businesses innovate and adopt new technologies, making them more productive and competitive in today’s global economy.

Anthony Rota, MP for Nipissing-Timiskaming made the funding announcement on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and minister responsible for FedNor.

“Our government recognizes that technology and innovation will shape the economy of the future and we are proud to assist businesses in their efforts to modernize their operations, grow and compete on the world stage. Today’s announcement will help local firms enhance their productivity and efficiency, leading to more good, middle-class jobs that support local families and strengthen our region’s economy,” said Mr. Rota, in the release.

Of the funding, $1 million will support the ongoing operations of Blue Sky Net for a three-year period, enabling the organization to deliver a variety of information and communications technology (ICT) activities throughout the Nipissing, Sudbury East, Manitoulin and Parry Sound east regions. As part of the initiative, BSN will collaborate with local stakeholders to assess ICT trends and talent gaps, identify and implement solutions to increase skilled talent to support digital industries, co-ordinate local and regional broadband deployment, and help increase digital technology adoption and awareness.

“The Government of Canada, through FedNor, is a strong supporter of ICT Networks and the work we do to spur innovation, support skills training and help businesses adopt new technologies and processes,” Susan Church, executive director of Blue Sky Net, said in the release. “These strategic initiatives will help us improve connectivity and access to technology for business and residential consumers by expanding infrastructure, increasing knowledge, developing applications and investing in businesses.”