Wednesday, August 26, 2009

NTIA Receives 2,200 Applications for Broadband Stimulus Funding

The U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (RUS) received almost 2,200 applications requesting nearly $28 billion in funding for proposed broadband projects in all 50 U.S. states, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.

This is the first round of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding aimed at expanding broadband access and adoption to help bridge the technological divide and create jobs building Internet infrastructure, with $4 billion available through loans, grants, and loan/grant combinations.

The Recovery Act provided a total of $7.2 billion to NTIA and RUS to expand access to and adoption of broadband services. Of that funding, NTIA will utilize $4.7 billion to deploy broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas in the United States, expand public computer center capacity, and encourage sustainable adoption of broadband service. RUS will invest $2.5 billion to facilitate broadband deployment in primarily rural communities. Approximately $2.4 billion from RUS and up to $1.6 billion from NTIA is available in this first grant round.

"Applicants requested nearly seven times the amount of funding available, which demonstrates the substantial interest in expanding broadband across the Nation," said Lawrence E. Strickling, Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and Administrator of NTIA. "We will move quickly but carefully to fund the best projects to bring broadband and jobs to more Americans." 

A preliminary analysis of applicant-reported data shows that NTIA and RUS received requests for grants and loans totaling nearly $28 billion. When including about $10.5 billion in matching funds committed by the applicants, there are over $38 billion in proposed broadband projects.
http://www.ntia.doc.govhttp://www.broadbandusa.gov/

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