Iowa is receiving $5,708,924 in funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, signed by President Biden, to plan for the deployment and adoption of affordable, equitable, and reliable high-speed Internet throughout the state.
“Broadband helps create equal learning opportunities for kids in school, expands telehealth options, and helps Iowa’s small businesses compete,” said Representative Cindy Axne in a news release. “That’s why I’m so glad to see nearly $6 million that I helped secure in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will go toward planning and infrastructure to lay the groundwork so Iowa can expand its high-speed internet access for all.”
All 50 U.S. states and six territories applied for planning grant funding for the Internet for All initiative’s Broadband, Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) program and the Digital Equity Act program. Grant awards for all 56 eligible entities will be announced on a rolling basis.
About Iowa’s Planning Grants
Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment Program
The BEAD Program provides $42.45 billion to expand high-speed Internet access by funding planning, infrastructure deployment and adoption programs.
Iowa will receive $5 million to fund various activities including:
- Assessments of the impact of the barriers to accessing reliable high-speed Internet service;
- Increasing capacity and staffing of Iowa’s broadband office;
- Education and assistance to Iowa communities wishing to communicate their high-speed Internet access needs.
The Digital Equity Act provides $2.75 billion to establish three grant programs to ensure that all people and communities have the skills, technology, and capacity needed to reap the full benefits of our digital economy. The first part of NTIA’s execution of the Digital Equity Act is to fund digital equity planning efforts.
Iowa will receive $708,924.00 to fund various activities including:
- Hiring one full-time staff member to coordinate and lead Iowa’s digital equity planning activities;
- Creation of an Iowa Digital Equity plan;
- Engagement with community anchor institutions, local governments, tribal communities, and non-profits to establish a vision for digital equity and digital inclusion.