Skip to main content

Possible online services disruption due to Internet related outage

A worldwide technology outage is causing disruption to some State of Illinois online systems.  We are aware of this issue and are diligently working on restoration.

Accelerate Illinois

The Accelerate Illinois Broadband Infrastructure Planning Program is a planning and capacity-building program designed to help Illinois communities leverage historic state and federal broadband infrastructure funding for community-driven broadband expansion and public-private partnership. The Accelerate Illinois program – a collaborative effort among the Illinois Office of Broadband, the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society, and University of Illinois Extension – offers Illinois local governments an intensive 4-month community engagement program with expert consultation and support.

Transformative federal funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, IIJA) will benefit communities that prepare in advance. The Accelerate Illinois program is designed to help communities do this preparation. It provides a platform for communities to build inclusive broadband teams; determine acceptable community roles; set visions; gather critical information about their local marketplace, technology options, and broadband provider partners; develop public-private partnerships, obtain financing, and implement projects.

The Accelerate Illinois program recognizes that not all communities are prepared to take advantage of these broadband funding programs. While communities will not receive grant funding, program participants each will benefit from 30-plus hours of free expert consultation and access to best-practice engagement in community-driven broadband planning.

In 2022, Accelerate Illinois included two six-community cohorts, with the opportunity made possible through the financial support of Heartland Forward and its Connecting the Heartland Initiative. Participating communities included:

  • City of Springfield
  • Jackson County
  • Knox County
  • Mercer County
  • Whiteside County
  • Village of Elsah
  • Bond County
  • Kankakee County & Pembroke CDC
  • Kaskaskia College area
  • Livingston County
  • Ogle County
  • Peoria & Woodford counties

In 2023, an agriculture-themed track – “Broadband Breakthrough” – expanded the collaboration to include Illinois State University and financial support from the United Soybean Board. Participating communities included:

  • Edgar County
  • Hancock County
  • McLean County
  • Ogle County
  • Schuyler County

Additional cohorts of Accelerate Illinois and the ag-themed “Broadband Breakthrough” track are planned for 2023 and 2024. Please contact to direct questions or express interest.