WASHINGTON – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced that Iowa received its first “Internet for All” grants for deploying high-speed Internet networks and developing digital skills training programs under the Biden-Harris Administration’s Internet for All initiative. Iowa is receiving $5,708,924.00 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.
"Equitable access to high-speed Internet will provide all Iowans with the means to work remotely, access telehealth services, and close the digital divide for our students," said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. "I want to thank Governor Reynolds for her efforts to bring broadband to rural and unserved areas of Iowa."
“Broadband helps create equal learning opportunities for kids in school, expands telehealth options, and helps Iowa’s small businesses compete,” said Representative Cindy Axne. “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.
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.
Additionally, the Federal Communications Commission’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward internet service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands. Visit AffordableConnectivity.gov to learn more.
For more information on the Biden-Harris Administration’s high-speed Internet programs please visit InternetforAll.gov.