Qwest is going to sit out the first round of broadband stimulus funding. The rules are such that the focus is on projects that favor only the most sparsely populated rural areas, rather than small rural communities.

Qwest said that even with the government funding, it cannot economically justify a build-out in those areas, according to the Denver Business Journal.

“We continue to support the use of program proceeds to facilitate the deployment of broadband services to unserved consumers,” said Steve Davis, Qwest’s senior vice president for public policy. “However, upon evaluation of the funding opportunity and the various requirements for participation, we were unable to make the business case for filing an application for more rural opportunities.”

The company wanted stimulus money to fund the neighborhood-level broadband networks that cost too much to realistically build in less populated areas, the Denver Business Journal reported.

More Broadband Direct 08/13/09:
•  Insight's Q2 revenue up; RGU growth slows
•  Discovery joins Comcast's On Demand Online trial
•  Sprint to pay $17.5M to settle ETF suit
•  Clearwire downgraded on competition, spending
•  Qwest balks at broadband stimulus plans
•  Mo. seeks $142M from stimulus for Internet access
•  Start-up Boxee brings in $6M in round of funding
•  Broadband Briefs for 08/13/09