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Biden-Harris Administration Approves District of Columbia, Delaware and Washington’s “Internet for All” Initial Proposal

May 09, 2024

News Media Contact
NTIA, Office of Public Affairs

WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has approved the District of Columbia, Delaware and Washington state’s Initial Proposals for the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program, a cornerstone of the Biden-Harris Administration’s “Internet for All” initiative.  

This approval will enable the District of Columbia, Delaware and Washington to request access to funding and begin implementation of the BEAD program—a major step towards closing the digital divide and meeting the President’s goal of connecting everyone in America with affordable, reliable, high-speed Internet service.

Today’s action allows these states and D.C. to request access to their BEAD allocations:

  • District of Columbia: Over $100 million
  • Delaware: Over $107 million
  • Washington: Over $1.2 billion

“Thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda we are delivering affordable, reliable high-speed Internet across the U.S.,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “Today D.C., Delaware and Washington state are taking a major step forward in closing the digital divide. D.C., Delaware and Washington state have all created plans that focus not just on access to the Internet but also on ensuring people have the skills and devices to thrive online.

The BEAD program is a $42.45 billion state grant program authorized by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The states, territories and Washington D.C. were allocated funding to deploy or upgrade high-speed Internet networks to ensure that everyone has access to reliable, affordable, high-speed Internet service.

Once deployment goals are met, any remaining funding can be used on high-speed Internet adoption, training, and workforce development efforts, among other eligible uses.

BEAD-eligible entities—the 56 states, territories, and the District of Columbia—are required to submit for NTIA’s approval an Initial Proposal detailing how they plan to spend their BEAD allocation to deliver high-speed Internet access to all unserved and underserved locations within their borders. All states submitted their Initial Proposals by December 27, 2023. Visit the Bead Initial Proposal Progress Dashboard page where NTIA provides weekly updates on the status of all 56 states and territories’ Initial Proposal.

NTIA will continue to announce approval of Initial Proposals on a rolling basis.

One year from Initial Proposal approval, states must submit a Final Proposal that details, among other things, the outcome of the subgrantee selection process and how the state will ensure universal coverage.

Here’s what stakeholders are saying about the announcement:


"Delaware plans to be the first state in the country to have every home and business connected to high-speed Internet, and this approval is one of the last steps before we can actually start the work, hopefully later this year," Governor John Carney said. "With resources from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law championed by President Biden and our congressional delegation, we can now move forward with selecting the providers that will serve almost 6,000 homes and businesses in Delaware that currently do not have the Internet speeds necessary for learning, work, telemedicine and online life that most of us take for granted."

District of Columbia

“By ensuring District residents, businesses, and institutions have access to affordable, high-speed Internet – and supporting them with trainings on digital literacy and workforce development – we can give more people in the District a fair shot, and remain a leader in tech careers, talent, and innovation,” said DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. “We are grateful for the support and partnership of the Biden-Harris Administration for their focus on digital equity so that together we can break down barriers and close the digital divide.”


"The BEAD Program has played a crucial role in bridging the digital divide and helping us meet our goal to bring Internet access to every person across Washington state," said Governor Jay Inslee. "Digital connectivity allows communities to tap into job, health care and education opportunities. I am grateful to the NTIA for approving Washington's initial proposal and I look forward to the Washington State Broadband Office’s continued success in submitting proposals ensuring more Washingtonians and Tribal nations receive Internet access.”


Internet for All

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law includes a historic $65 billion investment to expand affordable and reliable high-speed Internet access in communities across the U.S. NTIA recently launched a series of new high-speed Internet grant programs funded by the law that will build high-speed Internet infrastructure across the country, create more low-cost high-speed Internet service options, and address the digital equity and inclusion needs in our communities.

For more information on the Biden-Harris Administration’s high-speed Internet service programs, please visit

About the National Telecommunications and Information Administration

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is the Executive Branch agency that advises the President on telecommunications and information policy issues. NTIA’s programs and policymaking focus largely on expanding broadband Internet access and adoption in America, expanding the use of spectrum by all users, advancing public safety communications, and ensuring that the Internet remains an engine for innovation and economic growth.