Yesterday, Vice President Biden announced the release of 94 Recovery Act investments in broadband projects across the country. The projects are part of the BTOP program administered by the NTIA and the Rural Utilities Service (RUS), created with a goal of expanding broadband access and adoption to un-served or under-served populations. The announced investment totals $1.8 billion.
Yesterday’s announcement includes 66 grants awarded by the Commerce Department for projects to deploy broadband infrastructure, connect community anchor institutions, create and upgrade public computer centers, and encourage the adoption of broadband service. It also includes 28 awards from USDA for broadband infrastructure and satellite projects that will provide rural residents in 16 states and Native American areas access to improved service.
The Department of Commerce awards also contain grants for public safety broadband networks designed to improve response times and communication at the scene of emergencies. These projects are “demonstration projects” and touted as “a head start on President Obama’s commitment to support the development of a nationwide, interoperable public safety wireless broadband network.”
In reviewing the list of awarded BTOP projects, there is heavy funding of the “middle mile” as well as support for public computing centers.
- Broadband Grants Totaling $1.8 Billion Announced (techdailydose.nationaljournal.com)
- Satellite, Public Safety Projects Win Broadband Awards (pcworld.com)