CPUC decides regional consortia grants on Thursday

30 November 2011 by Steve Blum
, , ,

The final resolution and an alternate approving the first round of regional broadband consortia grants have been released by the California Public Utilities Commission. No major changes were made and it is now ready for a vote at the commission meeting on Thursday, 1 December 2011.

The commissioners will look at two proposed resolutions. The lead version gives Los Angeles County $1,346,927 in total funding over three years, the alternate proposes $2,310,000. Absent any surprises, the main point of discussion for commissioners will be picking a final number.… More

January funding for California regional broadband consortia

23 November 2011 by Steve Blum
, , ,
California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) staff are working through the first batch of regional broadband consortia grant applications. Those seven consortia are on track to be approved at the 1 December 2011 commission meeting and to receive start-up checks in January.
The 20-day public comment window has closed, and so far there’s no indication of any determined opposition. CPUC hasn’t release all of the filed comments, but the ones that are available generally support either the proposed resolution or the alternate version that provides increased funding to Los Angeles County.

Broadband consortia funding moves ahead in California

3 November 2011 by Steve Blum
, , ,

California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) staff have finished their initial review of the 15 regional consortia grant applications that were filed in August. Seven consortia have been conditionally approved and the full commission will vote on a formal funding resolution on 1 December.

Legislation approved last year and implemented by the CPUC this year sets aside $10 million from the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF) to support regional groups that promote broadband deployment and adoption in rural and urban areas.… More

The broadband stimulus pool is nearly dry

14 September 2010 by Steve Blum
, , , , , , , ,

BTOP might have $442 million in the kitty, although almost certainly not. Or $257 million or $15 million or zilch. For BIP, I can’t even estimate what’s left, but my best guess is that money is already gone.

First, I want to give credit where credit is due. Fred Dyste, via his Digital West blog, has been the gold standard for tracking BTOP (Broadband Technology Opportunities Program) and BIP (Broadband Initiatives Program) stimulus grant applications and awards.… More

The stimulus was fun while it lasted, now back to work

It’s time to look past the stimulus program, and re-adjust community broadband planning assumptions. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) and the Rural Utilities Service’s (RUS) Broadband Initiatives Program (BIP) encouraged local groups to roll themselves up into regional alliances and propose magnificent projects that would meet any conceivable need and serve every user imaginable.

It made sense, because that’s where the money was. NTIA and RUS made some dreams real in the first round last year, and are on track to fulfill a few more fantasies in the second round.… More

Follow the money, from the first to the second round of broadband stimulus grants

18 January 2010 by Steve Blum
, , , , , , , , , ,

More than a thousand first round hopefuls are still staring into the black hole that swallowed their applications. The second round notifications of funding availability (NOFAs) issued by the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) for the broadband stimulus program do not explicitly address the status of first round applications.

The stimulus bill gave RUS $2.5 billion and NTIA $4.7 billion for broadband project funding. In the first round, RUS said it would give out up to $2.4 billion.… More

Broadband stimulus grant update: first round still under review, second round likely to slip a bit

Anna Gomez, deputy assistant secretary for communications and information at NTIA (National Telecommunications and Information Administration), spoke at today’s Tech Policy Summit at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Anna Gomez, NTIA
 Secretary Gomez speaks to reporters
 at 2010 Consumer Electronics Show
She repeated previous agency comments about wanting to “get it done fast, get it done right and with the greatest effect possible.”

She described the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) as “unprecedented” at the NTIA.

Lessons learned in a difficult first round would be applied in the second round.… More

CPUC Approves $5 Million for central California coast broadband project

23 November 2009 by Steve Blum
, , , , , , , ,

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) unanimously approved a $4,975,009 grant from the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF) to the Central Coast Broadband Consortium (CCBC) on Friday, 20 November 2009. The grant pays for 10% of the approximately $50 million fiber optic trunk line network planned for Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties on California’s central coast.

CCBC system map

CCBC’s CASF and associated federal stimulus grant applications are managed by Tellus Venture Associates, which also does the financial planning and budgeting for the project.… More

Two big endorsements for major Central Coast broadband project

26 October 2009 by Steve Blum
, , , , , ,

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) staff have signed off on a 428 mile fiber optic trunk project for Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties on California’s Central Coast. These approvals make it more likely that the project will receive federal stimulus money through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP).smallCCBCmap.png

The Central Coast Broadband Consortium (CCBC) applied for grants to the CPUC’s California Advanced Services Fund and BTOP in August.… More