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NTIA Updates State Leaders on National Broadband Availability Map Progress

Tue, October 27, 2020

In mid-September, BroadbandUSA’s State Broadband Leaders Network (SBLN) held its semiannual Summit to discuss broadband issues and policy at the state level. NTIA provided an update on its National Broadband Availability Map (NBAM) and introduced BroadbandUSA’s new State Broadband Mapping Cohort.

The NBAM is a powerful, flexible, and secure geographic information system (GIS) platform for the visualization and comparison of federal, state, and commercially available broadband data sets to better inform broadband projects and funding decisions. NBAM’s partners include 22 states as well as USDA, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the U.S. Economic Development Administration. During the presentation, NTIA showcased the wide variety of available datasets and highlighted how NBAM users can harness this data. For example, comparing Ookla crowd sourced speed test data with the FCC Form 477 Broadband Deployment Data allows users to highlight potential gaps in broadband availability.

To further ensure that the views of the states are incorporated as NTIA’s broadband mapping platform evolves, the SBLN and NBAM teams introduced BroadbandUSA’s State Broadband Mapping Cohort. At monthly meetings of this cohort, NBAM users will be able to hone their knowledge of the platform through webinars with interactive training tutorials. The meetings will provide “hands-on” support with NBAM tools and data analysis that can be used for policymaking and funding decisions at the state level. These meetings also will offer opportunities to share best practices and resources related to broadband data and mapping.

To find out if your state is participating in the NBAM consult the updated NBAM section of the BroadbandUSA website. To learn how to participate in the NBAM effort or find information on the upcoming State Broadband Mapping Cohort, please email NBAM@ntia.gov.

Resources

BroadbandUSA Federal Interagency Work

Thu, September 10, 2020

NTIA is the Executive Branch agency principally responsible for advising the President on telecommunications and information policy issues. As part of this mission, the agency coordinates work across federal agencies to promote awareness of federal support for broadband investment and digital inclusion programs, regional cooperation among federal efforts on broadband, and collect and share information with communities about available federal resources for these efforts. To this end, the BroadbandUSA website serves as a one-stop shop for information regarding federal permitting and funding resources across agencies. 

 

American Broadband Initiative (ABI)

NTIA serves on the Executive Leadership Team of the American Broadband Initiative (ABI). The Initiative expands on the work of the Broadband Interagency Working Group. The ABI drives change across federal agencies to better leverage public assets and resources to expand our nation's broadband capacity. This mission is built on three core principles: 

  • Government processes should be clear, transparent, and responsive to stakeholders.
  • Federal assets should provide the greatest possible benefit to stakeholders and the public.
  • The federal government should be a good steward of taxpayer funds. 

More than 25 agencies participate in the Initiative.  On February 13, 2019, the Initiative was launched with the release of a Milestones Report, outlining agency commitments. On June 25, 2020, the Initiative released a Progress Report detailing its progress, including accomplishments across government to remove regulatory barriers to broadband deployment, leverage federal assets for broadband expansion, and maximize the impact of federal broadband funding. 

 

ABI Workstreams and Progress Report Resources: 

 

Federal Funding 

NTIA helps connect local and state governments to federal funding opportunities. BroadbandUSA's "one-stop" funding site is updated annually and provides information on how to access federal funding to support broadband planning, public access, digital inclusion, and deployment projects. 

 

Federal Permitting 

NTIA updates its website with information about federal agency permitting processes to provide easier, "one-stop" access to the information. As of July 2020, updates included information about agency fees associated with permitting infrastructure on federal lands, information about Department of Energy permitting processes, and permitting process improvements made by the Department of Defense. 

 

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter September 2020

Tue, September 01, 2020


Vol 5 | Issue 9 | August 2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Candeub photoPolicy Corner: NTIA Seeks Input on Internet Use Survey
By Adam Candeub, Acting Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

For a quarter century, NTIA has partnered with the U.S. Census Bureau to collect data on how Americans use the Internet. We reeased our most recent data from the Internet Use Survey in June. These data reflect a snapshot of Internet habits from November 2019, right before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Internet Use Survey is a powerful tool accessible to anyone passionate about Internet policy, digital inclusion, and closing the digital divide. To make this tool even better, NTIA is seeking your input. We all know how quickly the digital environment changes. Are there questions we ask in our survey that are no longer relevant? Are there are some new questions we need to be asking? To learn more about the survey data, and to add your comments, read our blog post. As always, everyone at NTIA appreciates your help and welcomes your expertise.


Broadband News and Updates

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NTIA Events

September 16, 2020
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series
Topic:
Smart Agriculture: Driving Innovation in Rural America
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Farmers and ranchers use smart technologies to improve yields, reduce costs, increase efficiencies, and improve decision making. Join BroadbandUSA on September 16, 2020, to take a deep dive into the technologies being implemented to further theseprecision agriculture techniques. Speakers will also provide an update on the Precision Ag Connectivity Taskforce, co-chaired by USDA and the Federal Communications Commission, as well as an overview of the latest innovations from the Global Cities Team Challenge Smart Agriculture and Rural SuperCluster, which encourages collaboration on innovative agriculture tech and rural projects.

Speakers:

  • Chad Rupe, Administrator, Rural Utility Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture

  • Dennis Buckmaster, Dean’s Fellow for Digital Agriculture, Professor of Agriculture and Biological Engineering, Purdue University; Co-Chair, GCTC Smart Agriculture Rural SuperCluster

  • Megan Nelson, Economic Analyst, American Farm Bureau Federation

Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter August 2020

Mon, August 03, 2020


Vol 5 | Issue 8 | August 2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Kinkoph photoPolicy Corner: NTIA’s National Broadband Availability Map Hits New Milestones
By Doug Kinkoph, Associate Administrator performing the delegated duties of the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

I am excited to report on the continued growth of our National Broadband Availability Map (NBAM). As it currently stands, 22 states are partnering with NTIA to bring extensive data visualization and analytics tools to bare in the fight to fill in the digital divide. Indiana, Georgia, Wyoming, and Washington State join the other 18 participating states that have announced since the launch of the NBAM. The NBAM combines federal, state, and private data to better inform broadband projects and funding decisions. To learn more about the project and to see if your state is among those participating, visit the NBAM page on our BroadbandUSA website.


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NTIA Events

BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series

BroadbandUSA will not be hosting a webinar in August. The next webinar will be on Wednesday, September 16, 2020 at 2 pm ET. Stay tuned for more information!
Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.

Contact Us. If you are interested in receiving technical assistance, please email broadbandusa@ntia.gov or call 202-482-2048. For more information, visit our website at broadbandusa.ntia.doc.gov.

Blog

National Broadband Availability Map Adds Indiana and Georgia

Thu, July 23, 2020

NTIA’s National Broadband Availability Map (NBAM) has added Indiana and Georgia to its growing roster of participants. These additions closely follow the incorporation of Wyoming and Washington State to the broadband platform earlier this month. To date, NBAM includes 22 states.

The NBAM is a geographic information system platform which allows for the visualization and analysis of federal, state, and commercially available data sets. This includes data from the Federal Communications Commission, U.S. Census Bureau, Universal Service Administrative Company, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Ookla, Measurement Lab, and the state governments. The mapping platform provides users, including administrators from the 22 participating states, with access to the NBAM and its data to better inform broadband projects and funding decisions in their states.

With more and more states joining, the NBAM is another step closer to creating a national platform that can help inform policymakers and expand Internet coverage across the United States.

For questions, please email:nbam@ntia.gov.

Blog

National Broadband Availability Map Reaches 20-State Milestone

Fri, July 10, 2020

NTIA’s National Broadband Availability Map (NBAM) reached a 20 state milestone with the addition of Wyoming and Washington State.

The NBAM is a geographic information system platform which allows for the visualization and analysis of federal, state, and commercially available data sets. This includes data from the Federal Communications Commission, U.S. Census Bureau, Universal Service Administrative Company, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Ookla, Measurement Lab, and the state governments. The mapping platform provides users, including administrators from the 20 participating states, with access to the NBAM and its data to better inform broadband projects and funding decisions in their states.

40 percent of the states now participate in the NBAM. This positive momentum will better equip policymakers as we work together to expand broadband Internet coverage across the United States.

For questions, please email:nbam@ntia.gov.

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter July 2020

Wed, July 01, 2020


Vol 5 | Issue 7 | July 2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Kinkoph photoPolicy Corner: NTIA and Federal Partners Release American Broadband Initiative One-Year Progress Report
By Doug Kinkoph, Associate Administrator performing the delegated duties of the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

Last week NTIA, along with our partners throughout the federal government, released the one-year progress report to the American Broadband Initiative (ABI) Milestones Report. The ABI was launched over a year ago as the Trump administration’s all-of-government initiative to stimulate broadband expansion through removing regulatory barriers and streamlining government processes. The progress report details accomplishments made by NTIA, USDA, and others. For example, NTIA completed 100% of its commitments in the ABI Milestones Report. This includes the establishment and expansion of our National Broadband Availability Map and the creation of a one-stop database for state and federal broadband resources. The progress report highlights many reasons to be excited, but there is still work to do. NTIA will continue to work with communities across the country to encourage the expansion and adoption of broadband Internet.


Broadband News and UpdatesFederal News

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New BroadbandUSA Team Members

Lindsey Hays photoLindsey Hays, GIS Specialist

Lindsey comes to NTIA from the USPS Office of the Inspector General (OIG). While at the OIG she was responsible for migrating their on-premises GIS environment to Azure. Prior to the OIG Lindsey worked for Esri Professional Services for 10 years as a GIS consultant assisting federal customers in deploying and managing geographic systems. She holds a master's degree in Environmental Remote Sensing and GIS from Boston University and a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame. When she is able, Lindsey enjoys traveling and kayaking.

Ryan Wiegand photoRyan Wiegand, Broadband Program Specialist

Ryan joins NTIA as a Broadband Program Specialist after recently finishing his master’s program in public policy and management at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College. During his program, Ryan completed a fellowship with the National Governors Association's Energy, Infrastructure, and Environment division and served as a Broadband Policy Intern with BroadbandUSA last summer. Prior to his studies at Heinz, he lived in Indianapolis (near his hometown of Carmel, Indiana), working in former Senator Joe Donnelly's constituent services and outreach office. He maintains allegiance to the Indiana Pacers, as well as to the Cubs, Fulham and any Notre Dame team. Ryan is very excited to be rejoining the BroadbandUSA team and to work alongside and continue learning from a fantastic group of professionals dedicated to broadband expansion and digital equity!

Nicole Dan photoNicole Dan, Pathways Intern

Nicole Dan is a second year student at Georgetown’s McCourt School of Public Policy. She is from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, and graduated from the University of Florida in 2018 with degrees in political science and journalism. Prior to attending McCourt, she worked at a digital fundraising firm. Her policy interests are technology and politics.

NTIA Events

July 15, 2020
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series
Topic:
Cyberinfrastructure: Moving Beyond Broadband at HBCUs and TCUs

Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Cyberinfrastructure differs from traditional web and broadband access in its focus and magnitude. The high-performance computing and networking resources of cyberinfrastructure enables educators, scientists and studentsopportunities to create and collaborate in entirely new ways. Many institutions of higher education are engaged in this new kind of scholarly inquiry and education, empowering their communities to innovate and to revolutionize what they do, how they do it, and who participates.Cyberinfrastructure is vital for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs) to be competitive in the 21st Century.Please join BroadbandUSA’s webinar on July 17, 2020 to hear from panelists who will highlight the cyberinfrastructure at HBCUs and TCUs, as well as the importance of partnerships with national organizations such as Internet2 and EDUCAUSE in achieving the common goals of diversity and inclusion.

Speakers:

  • Jason Arviso, Director of IT, Navajo Technical University

  • Curtis Bradlee, Interim Director of University Computing and Information Technology Systems (UCITS), South Carolina State University

  • Deborah F. Dent, CIO, Division of Information Technology, Jackson State University

  • Al Kuslikis, American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC)

Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.


NTIA's BroadbandUSA program promotes innovation and economic growth by supporting efforts to expand broadband connectivity and digital inclusion across America. In this role, BroadbandUSA serves state and local government, industry and non-profits that want to expand broadband infrastructure and promote digital inclusion.

Contact Us. If you are interested in receiving technical assistance, please email broadbandusa@ntia.gov or call 202-482-2048. For more information, visit our website at broadbandusa.ntia.doc.gov.

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter June 2020

Mon, June 01, 2020

Vol 5 | Issue 6 | June 2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Kinkoph photoPolicy Corner: BroadbandUSA Webinars Cover Digital Divide and Smart Tech
By Doug Kinkoph, Associate Administrator performing the delegated duties of the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

NTIA’s BroadbandUSA team has been hard at work on our monthly webinar series. They continue to bring experts from across the country together to share their technical expertise. These webinars are valuable sources of information for local community leaders, business owners, and residents. They also serve as important avenues for state and federal officials to better serve the needs of their constituencies. BroadbandUSA’s April webinar engaged three different service providers on the challenge of connecting their rural customers to high-quality broadband. In May, our most recent webinar focused on how smart technology partnerships can be leveraged to transform entire regions. While the subject matter differs across these presentations, the central takeaways remain the same: community-level leadership is vital, and partnering with business and government can unlock additional potential for success. I look forward to even more webinars and hope that you will join us in participating. Visit the Events page on our BroadbandUSA site to sign up for future webinars.


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Lifeline Program Updates

  • The US Department of Health and Human Services Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program offers States flexibility to fund access to computers and the Internet, using current year TANF funds. “A State may use Federal TANF funds or State "maintenance of effort" (MOE) expenditures to purchase computers, provide training and cover the cost of Internet access for eligible, needy families.” Further information can be found in the answer to question 11 in this Q&A.

  • The US Department of Agriculture clarified that States may use Supplemental Nutrition Assiatnce Programs (SNAP) Employment and Training (E&T) Program funds for laptops and other associated equipment such as Wi-Fi hot spots that a participant would need to access distance learning content if the SNAP E&T program is providing services virtually. See question B5 in this Q&A for further information.


NTIA Events

June 17, 2020
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series
Topic:
Utilizing Federal Data to Measure the Digital Divide
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Federal data can help state and local leaders and businesses understand what drives broadband adoption and utilization in their communities and target the digital divide. Join BroadbandUSA’s webinar on June 17, 2020 to learn about federal data sources, current trends, and where to access local information to inform your broadband efforts. NTIA will present the findings from their 2019 Computer and Internet Survey, the U.S. Census Bureau will highlight the broadband and connectivity data available in their American Communities Survey, and a representative from King County, Washington will showcase their data-driven dashboard developed using the available data.

Speakers:

  • Rafi Goldberg, Telecommunications Policy Analyst, Office of Policy Analysis and Development, NTIA

  • Tyson Weister, Program Analyst. Dissemination Outreach Branch, Center for Enterprise Dissemination (CED), U.S. Census Bureau

  • Nicole Franklin, Chief Equity Officer, King County (WA) Information Technology (KCIT)

Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.


NTIA's BroadbandUSA program promotes innovation and economic growth by supporting efforts to expand broadband connectivity and digital inclusion across America. In this role, BroadbandUSA serves state and local government, industry and non-profits that want to expand broadband infrastructure and promote digital inclusion.

Contact Us. If you are interested in receiving technical assistance, please email broadbandusa@ntia.gov or call 202-482-2048. For more information, visit our website at broadbandusa.ntia.doc.gov.

To be added or removed from the BroadbandUSA mailing list, please contact broadbandusa@ntia.gov

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter May 2020

Fri, May 01, 2020

Vol 5 | Issue 5 | May 2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Kinkoph photoPolicy Corner: Our Commitment to Connectivity Needs
By Doug Kinkoph, Associate Administrator performing the delegated duties of the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

I’m pleased to report that NTIA has been hard at work maintaining continuity of our operations while most of our employees have been teleworking during the unusual and difficult time for our country. On the spectrum front we have been working with businesses, federal stakeholders and the FCC to make sure our response to connectivity needs remains flexible. One way federal agencies can help during a time of increased demand is by enabling additional sharing of spectrum to provide short-term capacity for commercial services. NTIA has been working with agencies to accommodate these requests. Moving forward, NTIA will do all it can to help keep Americans connected to vital Internet services. Part of this work includes raising awareness of federal broadband resources, and I’m pleased to report that we’ve updated ourBroadbandUSA website database of 57 federal broadband programs, spanning 14 federal agencies with billions of dollars for broadband grants, loans, and other resources. And we’re continuing our multistakeholder work on building a more secure software supply chain through the Software Bill of Materials initiative.


Broadband News and Updates

Federal COVID-19 Broadband Resources

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NTIA Events

May 20, 2020
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series
Topic:
Using Smart Technologies to Drive Regional Transformation
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Local leaders are deploying smart technologies to address regional challenges, create economic efficiencies, improve sustainability, and enhance residential quality of life. Please join BroadbandUSA on May 20th to learn more about smart region efforts in Arizona, Colorado and the Great Lakes area. These initiatives focus on economic development, water quality, and the use of artificial intelligence to create stronger and more resilient communities.Speakers will also describe their work in the Global City Teams Challenge (GCTC) Smart Regions Collaborative. The GCTC is a peer-to-peer learning and best practices development effort started in 2014 by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). In 2019, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) partnered with NIST for the Smart Regions Collaborative.

Speakers:

  • Dominic Papa, Vice President, Smart States Initiative, Arizona Commerce Authority

  • Eric H. Drummond, CEO and Founder, Innovation Corridor; Co-Founder and Chair GCTC- Supercomputer Modeling and AI Cluster

  • Mark Fisher, President and CEO, Council of the Great Lakes Region

Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.

News

BroadbandUSA Newsletter April 2020

Wed, April 01, 2020

Vol 5 | Issue4 |April2020
Download PDF version here.
To sign up for BroadbandUSA’s newsletter, email broadbandusa@ntia.gov.


Policy Corner: Broadband is More Important Than Ever
By Doug Kinkoph, Associate Administrator performing the delegated duties of the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information

Broadband is more important than ever, and NTIA has been working to expand access and increase connectivity for all Americans. We recently provided a one-year update to the American Broadband Initiative (ABI), the Trump Administration’s government-wide approach to connectivity challenges. Five new states – Nebraska, New Mexico, Michigan, Missouri, and Virginia – have joined the initial eight states participating in our National Broadband Availability Map. We have seen increased participation in our State Broadband Leader’s Network, and our BroadbandUSA website now has the most comprehensive information on state resources available. At NTIA, we have also worked with the FCC, businesses, and federal stakeholders to make sure our response to connectivity needs remains flexible. Most recently, NTIA supported Verizon’s application to the FCC for a Special Temporary Authority to access radio frequency spectrum due to increased commercial use. We plan to continue our hard work to meet the needs of the American people.


Broadband News and Updates

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Public Safety / FirstNet

Digital Inclusion

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NTIA Events

April 15, 2020
BroadbandUSA Practical Broadband Conversations Webinar Series
Topic:
Rural Broadband: Three Service Providers Discuss Business Models and Solutions
Time: 2:00 PM Eastern
Rural service providers continue to deploy broadband solutions and work to close the digital divide, developing strong local partnerships and sustainable business models. Please join BroadbandUSA for its April webinar on broadband topics of interest, which features three providers that utilize different technologies to bring broadband solutions to their rural communities. Panelists include an electric co-op from the Virginia Piedmont, an independent telephone company serving rural areas in the Southeast, and a regional cable provider, offering a triple play of video, Internet, and voice in the upper Midwest.

Speakers:

  • Renee Chapline, Vice President of Communications and Government Affairs, Prince George Electric Cooperative

  • James Garner, Vice President of Operations, Telephone Electronics Corporation

  • Justin Forde, Senior Director of Government Relations, Midco

Visit our Webinar Archives for past presentations, transcripts and audio recordings.


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