ANCHORAGE – Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information Alan Davidson, during an official visit to Alaska, announced that the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has added $1 billion from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to the current Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program (TBCP) funding period, which closes September 1, 2022, part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to investing in affordable high-speed Internet for All.
NTIA already received more than 300 applications during the application window for over $5 billion in funding requests. Given the volume of requests and the significant need to quickly expand high-speed internet service on Tribal lands, NTIA has allocated $1 billion in Internet for All funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law toward the Notice of Funding Opportunity announced in June 2021. The total available for high-speed internet grants as part of that notice is now $1.98 billion.
“The response to our Tribal high-speed internet program demonstrated a critical need for improved connectivity on Tribal lands,” said Assistant Secretary Davidson. “Thanks to President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we’ll be able to award an additional billion dollars in grants in the very near future.”
The Tribal Broadband Connectivity Program, part of President Biden’s Internet for All initiative, offers grants to eligible Native American, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian entities for high-speed internet deployment, digital inclusion, workforce development, telehealth, and distance learning. In total, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law provides $65 billion to expand affordable, reliable high-speed internet access across the country.
There is no action required for Tribal entities who applied to the June 2021 funding opportunity. NTIA will continue to announce additional awards on a rolling basis as they move through NTIA’s review process.
An additional NOFO will be released this fall to solicit applications for the remaining TBCP Internet for All funding allocated in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. This will allow Tribes who missed out on the first application process a second chance to get involved. NTIA will soon host Tribal consultations to hear from Tribes directly prior to releasing the next funding opportunity.
For more information on the Biden-Harris Administration’s high-speed internet programs, please visit InternetforAll.gov.