WASHINGTON, D.C. – Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Bryan Newland announced that the Indian Affairs Office of Indian Economic Development (OIED) is accepting applications from eligible federally recognized tribes for the 2022 National Tribal Broadband Grant Program (NTBG).
With grant funding, tribes will be able to explore the possibility of developing or extending broadband services in their communities through feasibility studies of those broadband development opportunities.
“Reliable, high-speed internet access in tribal communities enables many opportunities for education, employment, entrepreneurship, and social connection,” said Assistant Secretary Newland. “These elements are all critical to our goal of making sure that people have the opportunity to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives in their tribal communities.”
The purpose of the National Tribal Broadband Grant Program is to improve the quality of life, spur economic development and commercial activity, create opportunities for self-employment, enhance educational resources and remote learning opportunities, and meet emergency and law enforcement needs by bringing broadband services to Native American communities that lack them. Feasibility studies funded through the program will assist tribes to make informed decisions regarding deployment or expansion of broadband in their communities.
National Tribal Broadband Grant Program award funding will be used to support tribe’s planning to install or expand broadband internet, which is high-speed internet access that is always on and faster than the traditional dial-up access, including that delivered through digital subscriber line (DSL), cable, fiber optic, wireless, satellite and broadband over power lines.
The Office of Indian Economic Development seeks to fund approximately 15 to 27 grants, ranging in value from $100,000 to $175,000, and eligibility is limited to federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native Tribal entities as listed in 87 FR 4636. These grants will be for a two-year term.
OIED is administering the NTBG, which is a competitive discretionary program, through its Division of Economic Development. The solicitation will be posted on the Grants.gov website under the “Search Grants” tab. Proposals must be submitted via Grants.gov. The solicitation announcement and details on how to apply also can be found in the Federal Register.