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12 Days of Broadband

Commerce Department’s NTIA Preparing to Distribute IIJA Broadband Funding

State allocations of BEAD funding will likely be announced by June 2023.

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Graphic courtesy of Workable used with permission

From the 12 Days of Broadband:

Despite passing the one-year anniversary of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in November, the bulk of the law’s $65 billion ticketed for broadband projects has yet to be disbursed.

Grant processes for the IIJA’s flagship program, the $42.45 billion Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment program, will begin in earnest in 2023. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration will apportion BEAD funds among the states based on relative need, and after receiving grants, the state governments will run sub-grant programs to finance broadband-deployment and related projects. The NTIA said in November that state allocations will likely be announced by June 30.

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Reporter David B. McGarry hails from sunny Los Angeles. He has written extensively on privacy and tech policy. His work has appeared in such publications as RealClearPolicy and The Center Square.

12 Days of Broadband

State Broadband Offices Face Major Challenges With Limited Resources

State officials are responsible for the disbursal of federal broadband infrastructure funds, but many offices are understaffed.

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Graphic courtesy of Zenzen / Adobe Stock

From the 12 Days of Broadband:

State broadband officials must administer funding programs, build broadband availability maps, promote digital equity, coordinate with federal agencies, and much more. They have consistently argued that engaging robust staking engagement and diverse partnerships is indispensable to their success.

Although the bulk of the broadband industry’s scrutiny is now directed federal government, the source of what many experts call a “once-in-a-generation” investment in broadband infrastructure, once those grants are issued to the states, state officials must plan and oversee the final disbursal of those funds.

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12 Days of Broadband

Legislators Discuss Banning TikTok Over Growing Security Concerns

The Senate recently passed a measure banning the app from government devices.

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Graphic courtesy of Paitoonpati / Adobe Stock

From the 12 Days of Broadband:

Year by year, tensions between the U.S. and China continue to grow. And in this Cold War 2.0, the battle over information technology and policy often appears to be at the heart of the conflict.

Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei has been effectively barred from the U.S. market for well over a year. But the constraints are tightening. And while Huawei has been central to China’s global communications aspirations, disputes over technology are now affecting all sorts of Chinese-owned companies. Even ByteDance’s TikTok, arguably the world’s hottest social media company with more than 100 million U.S. users, now appears in jeopardy.

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12 Days of Broadband

Will Congress Permanently Extend the Affordable Connectivity Program?

The program is helping low-income households afford internet access, but some experts warn that the fund will soon be depleted.

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From the 12 Days of Broadband:

Some say that people are not enrolling in the Federal Communications Commission’s new subsidy for low-income households, the Affordable Connectivity Program. Others say that at the rate people are subscribing, the fund will soon run out of money.  

At a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on Dec. 13, the National Digital Inclusion Alliance warned that the ACP is at risk of being deplenished. “Unless Congress takes action, this vital program will go away in just a few short years,” said the nonprofit’s executive director Angela Siefer at the hearing.

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