Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program
The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has allocated funding to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five territories to deploy affordable, reliable high-speed Internet service to everyone in America. States, Washington (DC), and territories will use funding from the $42.45 billion Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to administer grant programs within their borders.
The Federal Communications Commission released a pre-production draft of its new National Broadband Map. The map will display specific location-level information about broadband services available throughout the country – a significant step forward from the census block level data previously collected. This release of the draft map kicks off the public challenge processes that will play a critical role in improving the accuracy of the map.
On Monday, September 26, Benton Institute for Broadband & Society Director of Research and Fellowships Dr. Revati Prasad hosted an online panel discussion, From the Ground Up: Broadband Mapping By and for Communities, on how communities and states are collecting data on local broadband availability as the Federal Communications Commission rolls out the Broadband Data Collection (BDC) program.
TDS elected to receive Enhanced Alternative Connect America Cost Model (E-ACAM) support from the Federal Communications Commission. TDS has communicated to the FCC the company will accept the FCC's offers in 24 states TDS serves. A-CAM, which is being extended and enhanced to provide additional funding for rural broadband, requires the deployment of at least 100/20 Mbps internet service to consumers who lack that service. TDS has been part of the A-CAM program since its inception in 2016. The extended program requires TDS to deploy high-speed internet to more than 270,000 locations.
The goal of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration's (NTIA) $40+ billion Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program is to ensure that everyone in the United States has access to reliable, high-speed, and affordable broadband. Part of the challenge is how to treat areas where funding already has been awarded for broadband deployment. Will all awardees perform as expected?
Having a high-speed internet connection—and the ability to use it—is critical to modern life. One major challenge persists: we can run fiber broadband to every home in North Carolina, but if the residents can’t afford the service, they still risk being left behind. Fortunately, Congress created a tremendously impactful tool to combat the high costs of internet service as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). I urge you to reauthorize this critical program that makes internet access more affordable.
Vecima Announces Expansion of Manufacturing of Certain Entra Access Products to the US for the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment Program
Vecima Networks intends to expand manufacturing into the US for certain products in its Entra portfolio.
Plans to spend Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program dollars to connect underserved populations could be impacted by state elections, according to broadband policy experts. Among the ten states that got the largest BEAD allocations, three (Missouri, North Carolina and Louisiana) will hold gubernatorial elections before the end of 2024. Executive Director of ConnectLA Veneeth Iyengar—Louisiana’s broadband program—plans to have as much BEAD work as possible done before th
Without reliable, affordable internet, rural communities have limited economic opportunities and lack access to education, healthcare, and many other services. Broadband expansion is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, said Adrianne Furniss, director of the Benton Institute for Broadband and Society.
In August, I had the pleasure of visiting Totelcom’s—a family-owned, rural telecommunications provider—offices and training facilities in De Leon, Texas. The visit provided insight into the work and challenges of rural providers, and how much those challenges can vary across a state as vast and geographically diverse as Texas. Totelcom trains its workers on the job by partnering new employees with more experienced staff who show them the ropes and provide valuable mentorship.