Broadband Access: Federal Resources
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) gathers and disseminates broadband coverage data through their Form 477 filing process (see details below). Additionally, the FCC and their partner organization, the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), provide funding for broadband and technology related projects across the country. The following maps and links can help you and your team determine if and where broadband providers have accepted federal funding to expand broadband in your community.
National Broadband Map
The FCC maintains and updates a national broadband map available online here: https://broadbandmap.fcc.gov/#/. Additionally, the background data for this map can be downloaded and used locally and is found here: https://broadbandmap.fcc.gov/#/data-download. The data published by Connect Michigan will be more accurate than data available from the FCC given Connect Michigan’s efforts to work hands-on with broadband providers to refine and validate their federal Form 477 filings.
Connect America Fund Phase II
CAF Phase II provided $363 million to AT&T, CenturyLink, and Frontier in Michigan. These providers are required to build 10/1 Mbps to areas in the state eligible for the fund. The areas of Michigan where funds were accepted can be found here: https://data.usac.org/publicreports/caf-map/ .
Connect America Fund Phase II Auction
Following the initial subsidies distributed in CAF Phase II, the FCC conducted an auction to provide further subsidies for broadband build-out into more rural areas. The results of the auction in Michigan can be found here: https://www.fcc.gov/maps/caf2-auction903-results/.
Alternative Connect America Cost Model
While only three providers received funding in CAF Phase II, the FCC also created $18.8 million in alternative subsidy offerings for six providers in Michigan. The eligible areas for that subsidy can be found here: https://www.fcc.gov/maps/a-cam-offer-map/.
Mobility Fund II
While the CAF funds listed above provide subsidy to fixed broadband connections, the Mobility Fund portion of CAF offers support to build-out mobile broadband to rural America. The FCC is currently preparing to offer additional subsidies for mobile broadband build-out. The areas eligible for this funding can be found here: https://www.fcc.gov/maps/mobility-fund-ii-initial-eligible-areas-map/.
The Schools and Libraries Program, (also known as E-Rate), provides funding to schools and libraries to offset the cost of their internet connectivity. While the data available from USAC regarding E-Rate funds is more complicated to access, information on costs reimbursed by E-Rate by school and district across the state and nation is available here: http://www.slforms.universalservice.org/DRT/Default.aspx