The Benton Institute for Broadband & Society gives a nice outline of the latest with Federal Funding for broadband…
This week, the Department of the Treasury released guidance for the Coronavirus Capital Projects Fund program established by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The program allocates $10 billion for eligible governments to carry out critical capital projects that directly enable work, education, and health monitoring, including remote options. Projects eligible for funding must be designed to address a critical need that results from, or was made apparent or exacerbated by, the COVID-19 public health emergency. A key priority of this program is to make funds available to recipients that would like to make investments in high-quality, affordable broadband infrastructure and other digital connectivity technologies.
They outline who is eligible and what is required. (Primarily states are eligible.) Looks like they’ve peeked at the MN playbook – networks should serve areas not already served with 100 Mbps down and 20 up. Networks should scale to 100/100. They go beyond that to ask recipients to prioritize fiber and gov/public/nonprofit/coop ownership.
The good news is that the applications are open today – and I’m pretty sure Minnesota is ready. (That’s a “Minnesota pretty sure;” they have been ready and waiting for a while.