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NATIONAL RESOURCES

National Broadband Resources

A full list of national and state resources can be downloaded here: Full List of Broadband Resources.Broadband-Resources-Qualitative-Assessment-Tool-Final-2012 (1).xlsx
 
Federal Communications Commission
Provides resources for consumers and organizations to access public notices on FCC broadband-related actions, as well as describing different types of broadband connectivity and options for accessing broadband if it is currently unavailable or restricted (e.g. in rural areas).

Federal Communications Commission – National Broadband Plan
In early 2009, Congress directed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to develop a National Broadband Plan to ensure every American has “access to broadband capability.” Congress also required that this plan include a detailed strategy for achieving affordability and maximizing use of broadband. Broadband networks only create value to consumers and businesses when they are used in conjunction with broadband-capable devices to deliver useful applications and content. To fulfill Congress’s mandate, the plan seeks to ensure that the entire broadband ecosystem—networks, devices, content and applications— is healthy. It makes recommendations to the FCC, the Executive Branch, Congress and state and local governments.

U.S. Department of Agriculture – Rural Utilities Service 
USDA’S Rural Utilities Service provides programs to finance rural America’s telecommunications infrastructure. The Broadband Loan program provides loans to fund the costs of constructing, improving and acquiring facilities to provide broadband service to eligible rural communities. The Distance Learning and Telemedicine program brings electronic educational resources to rural schools and improves health care delivery in rural America. The Community Connect Grant program provides financial assistance to eligible applicants that will provide broadband in unserved areas to provide public safety services and foster economic growth. The Telecom Infrastructure Program provides loans to build and improve telecommunications service in rural areas.

Rural Broadband Access Loan and Loan Guarantee Program
An estimated total of $169 million in loans is available for FY2012. This page contains the application and eligibility information. Specifically, the application guide is at: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/UTP_FarmBillAppGuide.html

Community Connect Grant Program
Available only to single communities of under 20,000 population with no broadband access, $10 million total grant money available in FY2012. Unlike the broadband loan program, there is an application window which will likely be announced within the next couple of months. Last year, the application period was from March 4 – May 3, 2013.

There are also two more telecommunications loan and grant programs at USDA, which while not primarily focused on broadband, are broadband-related.
Telecommunications Infrastructure Loan Program
Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant Program

National Telecommunications and Information Administration
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration is an agency in the U.S. Department of Commerce.  In addition to representing the Executive Branch in both domestic and international telecommunications and information policy activities, NTIA also manages the Federal use of spectrum; performs cutting-edge telecommunications research and engineering, including resolving technical telecommunications issues for the Federal government and private sector; and administers infrastructure and public telecommunications facilities grants. NTIA also hosts Broadband USA which is an initiative to support community broadband projects and to promote broadband deployment and adoption.

National Broadband Map 
The map is a tool to search, analyze and map broadband availability across the United States. Created and maintained by the NTIA, in collaboration with the FCC, and in partnership with 50 states, five territories and the District of Columbia.

Internet Innovation Alliance Broadband Speed Table.
This table helps users to understand the difference in speed by technology.

Universal Services Administrative Corporation (USAC)
The Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) is an independent, not-for-profit corporation designated as the administrator of the federal Universal Service Fund by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). USAC administers Universal Service Fund (USF) programs for high cost companies serving rural areas, low-income consumers, rural health care providers, and schools and libraries. The Universal Service Fund helps provide communities across the country with affordable telecommunications services.

Connected Nation
Connected Nation is a leading technology organization committed to bringing affordable high-speed Internet and broadband-enabled resources to communities, institutions and individuals, working with public and private partners to help realize the benefits of today’s technology.

Broadband for America
Broadband for America (BfA) is a coalition of over 300 members ranging from independent consumer advocacy groups, to content and application providers, to the companies that build and maintain the Internet.  BfA’s provides a central clearinghouse for the latest thinking, the most advanced assessments, and the widest variety of views and opinions on the future of broadband availability and adoption in America.

Speed Matters
Speed Matters, an organization founded by the Communications Workers of America, advocates for programs and policies that build affordable, universal high-speed broadband investment.

Broadband Breakfast
BroadbandBreakfast.com is a Washington-based news organization with a community of interest around broadband stimulus, the national broadband plan, and copyright and intellectual property. 

StimulatingBroadband.com 
A blog that hosts analysts, commentators, practitioners, and reporters with deep experience in the larger information technology (IT) sector, in rural telecom, federal grants, and regulatory policy.

Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) is a non-partisan research and educational institute – a think tank – whose mission is to formulate and promote public policies to advance technological innovation and productivity internationally, in Washington, and in the states.  Broadband is a key research agenda item for ITIF.

Center for Rural Strategies
The Center for Rural Strategies supports policies and programs that expand access to broadband for all Americans, especially those who are marginalized by geography, economics, and other circumstances.

Small Business Administration – Office of Advocacy
The Advocacy arm of the Small Business Administration advances the views and concerns of small business before Congress, the White House, the federal agencies, the federal courts and state policy makers.  They have conducted several studies on the impact of broadband speed and pricing on small businesse

The American Telemedicine Association – ATA 
The American Telemedicine Association is the leading international resource and advocate promoting the use of advanced remote medical technologies. ATA and its diverse membership, works to fully integrate telemedicine into transformed healthcare systems to improve quality, equity and affordability of healthcare throughout the world. Established in 1993 as a non-profit organization and headquartered in Washington, DC, membership in the Association is open to individuals, healthcare institutions, companies and other organizations with an interest in promoting the deployment of telemedicine throughout the world. ATA is governed by a Board of Directors, which is elected by the association’s membership.

The Healthcare Information Management & Systems Society – HIMSS
HIMSS is a cause-based, not-for-profit organization exclusively focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of information technology (IT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare. HIMSS represents more than 35,000 individual members, of which more than two thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations. HIMSS also includes over 520 corporate members and more than 120 not-for-profit organizations that share our mission of transforming healthcare through the effective use of information technology and management systems.