By: Zac Byrd, Marketing Associate & Hailey Farrow, Marketing Manager on behalf of CostQuest.
This month, the FCC released its new Broadband Funding Map, and The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) released the High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard with accompanying reports. Both these tools will assist in enhancing coordination and communication on the progress of broadband access and infrastructure development funding initiatives, as to specifically where and what funding programs have been implemented towards the goal of nationwide connectivity.
Let’s explore the key features and benefits of these initiatives.
The FCC’s Broadband Funding Map
On May 15, 2023, the FCC announced the release of the Broadband Funding Map, a tool used to show where the Federal government is providing financial support for broadband infrastructure development projects. The FCC states in their Public Notice, that as a part of the mandate from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), the FCC is required to, “establish an online mapping tool to provide a locations overview of the overall geographic footprint of each broadband infrastructure deployment project funded by the federal government.” Any funding data that is submitted to the FCC by another federal agency will be reflected on the map in response to the IIJA mandate.
FCC’s National Broadband Funding Map. Source: FCC
Features and what’s included in the new Broadband Funding Map
The FCC’s Broadband Funding Map will allow users to access important information on federal funding programs, such as:
- Identify, search, and filter federal funding programs by the Internet Service Provider that will be receiving the funds.
- Duration timeline of the funding programs.
- Number of locations that will be included in each project.
- Download and upload speeds.
The Broadband Funding Map contains broadband service availability data up to December 31st, 2022. Throughout the year as the National Broadband Map is updated with more recent availability data (twice a year), the same changes will be made to the Broadband Funding Map.
The data used for the Broadband Funding Map is sourced from the Department of Agriculture (USDA), the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), the Department of Treasury, and the FCC.
The funding programs depicted on the funding map include:
- FCC’s CAF II & RDOF programs
- NTIA’s Broadband Infrastructure Program
- Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program
- Treasury Capital Projects Fund
- USDA Rural Utilities Service Community Connect Grant Program
- Rural E-connectivity Program
- Telecommunications Loan Program.
The FCC’s Broadband Funding Map does not provide funding programs at a state level, this requires states to determine ineligible areas due to funding commitments from other state-level broadband funding programs.
NTIA’s New High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard & Reports
Parallel to the FCC’s new Broadband Funding Map, on May 8th, 2023, NTIA released three items:
- The High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard
- The 2022 Office of Internet Connectivity & Growth Annual Report
- The 2022 Federal Broadband Funding Report
The High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard was developed to highlight federal investments in high-speed internet programs and their progress.
Page 1 and 6 of NTIA’s High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard. Source: NTIA
NTIA’s High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard includes:
- Spending data from 13 agencies across 98 federal high-speed internet programs.
- Reports Tribal broadband funding for the first time.
- Data by federal programs at the state level.
A breakdown of funding:
- Appropriated: An agency is provided budget authority and can incur obligations for specified purposes.
- Outlayed: An agency has federal money paid out, not just promised to be paid.
- Obligated: An agency has a legal liability to disburse obligated funds.
A breakdown of program uses:
- Planning, Data, and Mapping
- Infrastructure Deployment
- Digital Inclusion or Adoption
The 2022 Office of Internet Connectivity & Growth Annual Report and the 2022 Federal Broadband Funding Report were created to show how government agencies are coordinating to align on policy and implementation of various high-speed internet programs.
First pages of the 2022 Office of Internet Connectivity & Growth Annual Report and the 2022 Federal Broadband Funding Report. Source: NTIA
NTIA’s reports provide a comprehensive overview, including:
- A description of the NTIA’s Office of Internet Connectivity and Growth activities.
- The number of households that received broadband through universal service programs or federal broadband support.
- A framework to guide future estimates of the economic impact of broadband deployment initiatives.
Alan Davidson, the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications & Information, says these reports “shows how Federal agencies across the Biden-Harris administration are working together to target funding through the Internet for All initiative and close the digital divide.” The reports were developed in accordance with the Access Broadband Act, which requires the NTIA to submit annual reports to Congress.
The NTIA developed the High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard to accompany the Federal Broadband Funding Report.
New FCC Broadband Funding Map & other tools will assist funding coordination
With copious amounts of broadband funding already awarded to several areas, and with more coming down the pipeline, it’s crucial to have clear communication regarding funding distribution to help parties understand what areas have been funded, and by what programs, to avoid any potential funding overlap. With the end goal of providing high-speed internet connectivity across the country, NTIA’s new High-Speed Internet Programs Dashboard and reports along with the FCC’s Broadband Funding Map will be key resources to ensure funding is divided and allocated to the appropriate areas in need of high-speed broadband.
Be sure to check out these new broadband funding resources below:
This communication does not reflect the opinion or the policy of the Federal Communications Commission and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. The FCC and NTIA are not responsible for the information or views in this communication and are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or timeliness of such information or views.