The U.S. Department of the Treasury says that its Capital Projects Fund (CPF) so far has awarded about $6.7 billion for broadband, digital technology and multi-purpose community centers.
In an update a year after the first awards were announced, the department said that the CPF—which is part of the American Rescue Plan—has funded projects in 42 states that reach about 1.88 million homes, business and other locations.
The CPF is a $10 billion program aimed at states, territories, freely associated states and Tribal governments. It runs in tandem with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s Affordable Connectivity Program, which provides $30 per month toward broadband service for qualifying households ($75 on Tribal lands). In all, the agency says that it has brought broadband to more than 18 million households.
Capital Projects Fund Awards
The first awards announcement was for more than 200,000 homes and businesses in Louisiana (which received $176.7 million in funding), New Hampshire ($50 million), Virginia ($219.8 million) and West Virginia ($136.3 million).
The press release from the Treasury Department about the CPF first anniversary suggests that the fund provides flexibility to recipients.
“In addition to broadband infrastructure projects, some states like Kansas are investing in digital connectivity technology projects that aim to address gaps in digital equity, affordability, and broadband adoption, while other states – like Connecticut, Delaware, and Idaho – are using CPF resources to build and improve multi-purpose community centers where residents can access high-speed internet.
The observation is quite similar to one made by Pew Charitable Trusts in a recent blog post about CPF. Pew noted that the CPF rules allow funding recipients to use the money for a broader range of projects in comparison with the rules for the upcoming Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program.