Treasury Department Announces Awards to Connect More Families and Businesses to High-Speed Internet as Part of President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda
May 15, 2023 / Source: Treasury
Delaware, Idaho approved to receive approximately $185.9 million under the American Rescue Plan
Combined with other Administration initiatives, President Biden’s Investing in America agenda has brought affordable internet to over 17 million American households
WASHINGTON — Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury announced the approval of federal funds for multi-purpose community facility projects and broadband infrastructure projects in Delaware and Idaho under the American Rescue Plan’s Capital Projects Fund (CPF), part of President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda. A key priority of the CPF program is expanding economic opportunities and providing internet connectivity in communities with unmet needs. Already, President Biden’s Investing in America agenda has delivered affordable, high-speed internet to 17 million American households, through the CPF funded by the American Rescue Plan, and through the Affordable Connectivity Program funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
“Digital connectivity is central to expanding economic opportunity in communities across the country,” said Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo. “This funding is a key piece of the Biden-Harris Administration’s historic investments to increase access to high-speed internet for millions of Americans and provide more opportunities to fully participate in the 21st century economy.”
“We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with ARPA capital funds to build a better future for the next generation of Delawareans,” said Governor Carney. “The capital projects announced today aim to expand economic opportunities for Delaware families, dedicate resources to make sure children have access to the education they deserve, and large investments in our communities – especially those hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. I want to thank the Congressional delegation for their advocacy and look forward to seeing significant results from these investments.”
“I was proud to work on provisions in the American Rescue Plan that helps those working on the front lines with Delawareans that need help the most,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. “From my time as Governor, I’ve worked on strengthening families, and these funds are going to improve the organizations that help uplift so many families in our state. These organizations often invest so much of their resources into their missions – whether it’s providing shelter, services for our veterans, substance abuse treatment, job training or after-school activities for children – and these funds will help them improve their facilities so they can better serve our communities.”
“It’s great to see funds from the American Rescue Plan that Democrats and President Biden enacted coming to Delaware in all three counties,” said U.S Senator Chris Coons. “From job skills workshops to community programs to addressing nutritional insecurity, this announcement is making a difference in the lives of Delawareans up and down the state. I can’t wait to see all of these visions for each one of these dozens of projects become reality in the coming months and years.”
“Today is a prime example of how we’re continuing to see historic investments being made in Delaware because of the American Rescue Plan Act,” said Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester. “The impact from these capital projects won’t just ensure that these organizations are able to fulfill their missions to provide critical services – from health care and mental health to job training and entrepreneurship – but will help us improve the quality of life for Delawareans in every part of our state.”
The CPF provides a total of $10 billion to states, territories, freely associated states, and Tribal governments to fund critical capital projects that enable work, education, and health monitoring. In addition to the $10 billion provided by the CPF, many governments are putting a portion of their State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) toward meeting the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal of connecting every American household to affordable, reliable high-speed internet. Together, these American Rescue Plan programs and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law are working in tandem with President Biden’s Investing in America agenda to close the digital divide – deploying high-speed internet to those without access and lowering costs for those who cannot afford it.
In accordance with the Treasury Department’s guidance, each state’s plan requires service providers to participate in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) new Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The Affordable Connectivity Program, funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, helps ensure that households can afford high-speed internet by providing a discount of up to $30 per month (or up to $75 per eligible household on Tribal lands). Experts estimate that nearly 40% of U.S. households are eligible for the program.
To further lower costs, President Biden and Vice President Harris announced last year that the Administration had secured commitments from 20 leading internet service providers—covering more than 80% of the U.S. population—to offer all ACP-eligible households high-speed, reliable internet plans for no more than $30 per month. As a result of this agreement and the ACP, eligible households can receive internet access at no cost and can check their eligibility and sign up at GetInternet.gov.
The Treasury Department began announcing state awards in June of last year. To date, CPF has awarded approximately $6.5 billion for broadband, digital technology, and multi-purpose community center projects in 41 states. States estimate that the broadband investments will reach more than 1.83 million locations. The Department will continue approving state and Tribal plans on a rolling basis.
The following descriptions summarize the Idaho and Delaware plans that Treasury approved today:
- Delaware is approved to receive $65.9 million for Delaware’s Multi-Purpose Community Facility Program, which will provide funding for the construction and renovation of 29 nonprofit community facilities selected through a competitive grant process. These facilities will provide services or activities that directly enable work, education, and health monitoring in towns and cities with unmet needs across the state’s three counties. For example, they will help connect youth with job trainings and opportunities, provide services for homeless individuals, provide support for children and adults with disabilities, and offer public Wi-Fi access and health services for seniors. The plan approved by the Treasury Department today represents 58% of the state’s total allocation under the CPF program.
- Idaho is approved to receive $120 million for broadband infrastructure, which the state estimates will serve 35,000 locations. The Idaho Broadband Advisory Board (IBAB) Broadband Infrastructure Grant – CPF (BIG-CPF) is a competitive grant program designed to bring reliable broadband infrastructure to areas lacking access to internet with speeds of at least 100/20 Mbps. Building off previous CARES Act investments in broadband, Idaho will prioritize fiber investments aiming to connect the greatest number of households to high-speed internet. The plan approved by the Treasury Department today represents 93% of the state’s total allocation under the CPF program.