Broadband Infrastructure Program
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration announced $288 million in grant funding available to states to build broadband infrastructure through the Broadband Infrastructure Program. The grants funded by NTIA will range from $5 million to $30 million. These grants will be awarded to partnerships between the public sector and broadband carriers for fixed broadband service infrastructure projects.
The State of Arizona, through the Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA), is seeking to formally support an eligible project for the $288 million NTIA Broadband Infrastructure Program 21. The ACA encourages any carrier – or political subdivision with a carrier partner – to submit an expression of interest with an eligible project by Friday, June 18. The ACA intends to select one project as a co-applicant or to receive the State’s full endorsement to the NTIA.
NTIA Grant Project Requirements
- Provide broadband service to the greatest number of unserved households in an eligible service area;
- Provide broadband service to rural areas;
- Be most cost-effective in providing broadband service; or
- Provide broadband service with a download speed of at least 100 Mbps and an upload speed of at least 20 Mbps.
Key Requirements Takeaways
- The grant is designed for partnerships between states or sub-divisions of the states and a private carrier who will provide fixed broadband service.
- The intent is for projects in rural areas, but urban areas are eligible if all requirements are met.
- No matching funds are required although a 10% match will increase the project’s likelihood of success.
- Middle-Mile Projects are eligible however they must interconnect to a last mile network and demonstrate how the middle-mile network will benefit the last mile providers.
- The lead applicant is the State or subdivision of the State.
- Existing and planned Broadband projects using federal funds (RDOF, CAFII, USDA Re-Connect & others) in an area make that area ineligible for this grant.
- Construction timeline is one year after receiving the grant with an extension available.
The ACA is eager to identify any and all eligible projects in Arizona. For projects not selected for the state’s full endorsement for the NTIA grant, the ACA will be eager to assist in identifying other federal funding opportunities and strategic partners. The ACA will be updating Arizona’s Broadband Strategic Plan through September, and these projects may inform this planning work.
Click the link below to submit an expression of interest in the grant. Submissions must be completed by Friday, June 18, 2021. Please send any questions to Jeff Sobotka at [email protected].