Congressman Anthony Brindisi today announced Distance Learning and Telemedicine grants for rural communities in New York’s 22nd district, totaling nearly $1 million. The funds come from the United States Department of Agriculture as part of their Rural Development grant program.

The Otsego Northern Catskills Board of Cooperative Educational Services (ONC BOCES) was awarded $683,692 to help provide access to Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) courses for high school students preparing for college or to enter the workforce. The grant will also help fund remote training in opioid addiction and overdose prevention for community members, school staff, and emergency personnel. The grant award will benefit more than 9,000 students, teachers, and community members across Delaware, Otsego, Sullivan, Schoharie, Madison, and Chenango Counties.

“These dollars are much-needed federal investments in our rural communities,” said Brindisi. “Too many families have been affected by the opioid epidemic, and this funding will help us ramp up our local response to this public health emergency while expanding STEM education for our students at the same time. These are the kinds of research-driven, results-oriented projects that will help our area for years to come, and I will keep working to secure funding for our region.”

Brindisi, a leading voice in the fight against the opioid epidemic, was recently awarded the Voice for Non-Opioid Choices award by Voices for Non-Opioid Choices, a national advocacy group dedicated to preventing opioid addiction.