BroadbandUSA Newsletter June 2020

Mon, June 01, 2020

Vol 5 | Issue 6 | June 2020
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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.

Broadband News and Updates

Federal News

State News

Digital Inclusion

Public Safety/FirstNet

General News

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
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.


  • 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.

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