Another great day of stories of success and some hardship from people who are willing to share their advice. We heard about how to build a business case to get a community broadband plan off the ground and keep the public engaged and the importance of getting people to use the broadband once it’s there. There were a few sessions on funding.
A few high level observations:
- Every community is different until it isn’t. You can learn from the experience of others but there are no cookie cutter solutions.
- Local, local, local – bringing decisions down to the local level helps and at the local level you really have no one else to depend on.
- Broadband is a selling point for a community and lack of it will drive people away.
- Cooperatives will be will to getting broadband to rural areas.
Here’s a short list of some of the funders mentioned (borrowed from Tweets):
- E-Rate http://www.usac.org/sl/ for schools and libraries – a competitive bid
- Rural health care funding http://www.usac.org/rhc/
- HUD https://www.hudexchange.info/resource/4891/cdbg-broadband-
- Choice neighborhoods program http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?
- Lifeline for adoption Lifeline for adoption https://www.fcc.gov/general/low-income-broadband-pilot-program-0 …