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High-Speed Internet

NTIA is engaged in a range of efforts to increase broadband Internet access and adoption in America, which supports economic growth, job creation, and improved education, health care, and public safety. NTIA’s BroadbandUSA program serves communities, industry and nonprofits that want to expand broadband infrastructure and promote digital inclusion. BroadbandUSA’s services are driven by the needs and interests of state and local broadband leaders, and focus on encouraging private partnerships, supporting planning efforts, helping to identify funding, and implementing public-private broadband partnerships. NTIA also conducts research and analysis into broadband usage and adoption through our Digital Nation initiative.

Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act Overview

On November 15, 2021, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law. This Act includes a significant investment of $65 billion to help close the digital divide and ensure that all Americans have access to reliable, high speed, and affordable broadband. This investment builds upon the funding for broadband deployment provided in the American Rescue Plan, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, the FCC’s Universal Service program, and USDA’s Rural Utilities Service broadband programs. This historic investment will lay critical groundwork for widespread access and affordability of broadband, creating new jobs and economic opportunities, providing increased access to healthcare services, enriching educational experiences of students, and improving overall quality of life for all Americans.

Internet For All Initiative

On May 13, 2022, NTIA launched the “Internet for All” initiative to implement these funds through the following grant programs:

Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program

Appropriates $42.45 billion for states, territories, the District of Columbia (D.C.), and Puerto Rico (P.R.) to utilize for broadband deployment, mapping, and adoption projects. Each state, D.C., and P.R. will receive an initial allocation of $100 million -- and $100 million will be divided equally among the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands -- to support planning efforts including building capacity in state broadband offices and outreach and coordination with local communities. States, territories, D.C., and P.R., leveraging initial planning funds that will be made available through the program, will submit a 5-year action plan, which shall be informed by collaboration with local and regional entities. The remaining funding will be distributed based on a formula that considers the number of unserved and high-cost locations in the state, based on the maps to be published by the FCC in 2022. The first priority for funding is for providing broadband to unserved areas (those below 25/3 Mbps), followed by underserved areas (those below 100/20 Mbps), and then serving community anchor institutions (1/1 Gbps).

Digital Equity Act Programs

Dedicates $2.75 billion to establish three grant programs that promote digital inclusion and equity to ensure that all individuals and communities have the skills, technology, and capacity needed to reap the full benefits of our digital economy. The goal of these programs is to promote the meaningful adoption and use of broadband services across the targeted populations in the Act, including low-income households, aging populations, incarcerated individuals, veterans, individuals with disabilities, individuals with a language barrier, racial and ethnic minorities, and rural inhabitants.

  • State Digital Equity Planning Grant Program: $60 million formula grant program for states and territories to develop digital equity plans.
  • State Digital Equity Capacity Grant Program$1.44 billion formula grant program for states and territories distributed via annual grant programs over 5 years to implement digital equity projects and support the implementation of digital equity plans.
  • Digital Equity Competitive Grant Program: $1.25 billion discretionary grant program distributed vial annual grant programs over 5 years to implement digital equity projects. Eligible applicants include specific types of political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of a state; tribal governments; nonprofit entities; community anchor institutions; local educational agencies; and entities that carry out workforce development programs.

Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program

Establishes and funds a $1 billion program for the construction, improvement or acquisition of middle mile infrastructure. The purpose of the grant program is to expand and extend middle mile infrastructure to reduce the cost of connecting unserved and underserved areas to the internet backbone. Eligible applicants include States, political subdivisions of a State, tribal governments, technology companies, electric utilities, utility cooperatives, public utility districts, telecommunications companies, telecommunications cooperatives, nonprofit foundations, nonprofit corporations, nonprofit institutions, nonprofit associations, regional planning councils, Native entities, or economic development authorities.

Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program (2023)

Provides an additional $2 billion to TBCP, a NTIA program previously implemented under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. The TBCP directs funding to tribal governments to be used for broadband deployment on tribal lands, as well as for telehealth, distance learning, broadband affordability, and digital inclusion.

Consolidated Appropriations Action, 2021

NTIA also manages three broadband grant programs funded by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021:

Broadband Infrastructure Program

A $288 million broadband deployment program directed to partnerships between a state, or one or more political subdivisions of a state, and providers of fixed broadband service to support broadband infrastructure deployment to areas lacking broadband, especially rural areas.

Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program (2021)

A $980 million program directed to tribal governments to be used for broadband deployment on tribal lands, as well as for telehealth, distance learning, broadband affordability, and digital inclusion.

Connecting Minority Communities Pilot Program

A $268 million grant program directed to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) for the purchase of broadband internet access service and eligible equipment or to hire and train information technology personnel.

Related Links: 

BroadbandUSA
Digital Nation research on broadband adoption

Related content


More Than 235 Applications Submitted to the Biden-Harris Administration’s “Internet for All” Middle Mile Grant Program

October 04, 2022

WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced today preliminary data that shows over 235 applications were submitted totaling more than $5.5 billion in funding requests for the Enabling Middle Mile Infrastructure Grant Program, part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to investing in affordable high-speed Internet for all.  

Scoring Big on your Middle Mile Application Series: Budget Information

September 28, 2022

The September 30, 2022, application deadline for the Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program is just days away. Our aim is to help applicants submit complete, informed, and high-quality applications. This post focuses on the Budget Information section.

So here’s how to Be Complete and Score Big!

Budget Information

The Budget Information section is the third major section of the application. It is where applicants will have the opportunity to showcase their financial success as well as the sustainability of their project.

Another component relevant to this section is the “Letter of Credit.” The Letter of Credit is not required at this point in the application process, but a letter from a bank, whereby the bank commits to making a Letter of Credit available if your application is selected for award, is required. The objective is to review financials that show success and a pro forma to demonstrate that this project has sufficient resources to complete the project.

Scoring Big on Your Middle Mile Application Series: Project Information

September 28, 2022

Who Are Middle Mile Providers?

Middle mile service may be offered by a wide range of entities, from traditional retail Internet Service Providers, large technology companies that do not offer retail Internet service at all, or electric utilities that increasingly recognize their capability to transform the communications market. Regardless of who deploys and operates them, middle mile connections are crucial to connectivity and competition.

The Enabling Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program is a $1 billion program funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for the construction, improvement or acquisition of middle mile infrastructure. If you’re reading this, you’re likely looking for tips on how to “score big” as you finalize application ahead of the September 30, 2022, deadline.

Project Information

The Project Information section is the second major section of the middle mile grant application. This portion provides space for applicants to describe the details and timeline of their project. It includes an executive summary, a “level of need narrative”, and a description of government and community involvement.

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