More About Broadband
Getting Started in the Digital Age
Broadband USA's Adoption Toolkit: Based on lesson’s learned from grantees, NTIA created this guide to support communities in increasing broadband adoption. This toolkit includes many success stories from across the country and important considerations when launching an adoption program.
National Digital Inclusion Alliance Guidebook: This guidebook is concerned with one organizational choice that digital inclusion leaders in some communities are making: community-wide digital inclusion coalitions. Libraries, community-based organizations, local governments, housing authorities and others in cities across the country organize coalitions to cooperatively address equitable access and use of communication technologies.
Digital Inclusion Start-Up Manual: This manual is intended to provide guidance to individuals looking to increase access and use of technology in disadvantaged communities through digital literacy training, affordable home broadband, affordable devices and tech support. These efforts might take place within a community-based organization, a library, a housing authority, a local government or other community locations.
Access and Inclusion in the Digital Age: This is a resource guide designed for local governments to support the advancement of digital inclusion. The guide was developed by a team of six cities from across the country (including Chattanooga).
ConnectHome Playbook: The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development created this playbook to help housing communities build partnerships to narrow the digital divide.
TN Broadband Accessibility Act
The TBAA focuses on providing broadband resources in the State of Tennessee's unserved and underserved areas. Through the Broadband Accessibility Grant Program, broadband providers will be able to receive grant funding over a three-year period to encourage broadband deployment to areas in needs. Grant funding has been appropriated at $10M in FY 2018, $15M in FY 2019, and $20M in FY2020.
In the past, electric cooperatives have been prohibited from providing retail broadband services in their areas. However, these cooperatives are uniquely situated to aid in the deployment of broadband throughout the state. The TBAA permits private, nonprofit electric cooperatives to begin providing broadband services. This change can help to bridge the broadband accessibility gap as electric cooperatives have experience serving areas with low population densities. In order to ensure that consumers' choices are not limited by this development, the TBAA strengthens protections that prevent electric cooperatives from using electric system assets to subsidize broadband services.
While broadband infrastructure is essential, ensuring that Tennesseans have the ability to effectively use the internet is equally important. The TBAA provides grant funding opportunities to the State of Tennessee's local libraries to help improve local residents' digital literacy skills and ultimately maximize the potential benefits of increased broadband accessibility. Through the Rural Task Force and other coordinated efforts, the State will focus on evalutating existing programs and driving digital adoption throughout Tennessee.
FCC Broadband Mapping Challenge
FCC Broadband Accessibility Act
Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act
FCC Broadband Mapping Challenge Fall 2022/January 2023
The FCC's National Broadband Map is a tool that displays internet availability data across the entire country. For the first time, consumers were able to provide input on the map. In Tennessee, residents could visit BroadbandMap.gov to search for their homes or small businesses. If the reported service or speed was not available for purchase, they could submit a challenge to correct the map.
The FCC's goal with the Broadband Map challenge was to ensure that all locations on the map were accurately represented. They provided residents of Tennessee with information about their location's broadband accessibility and allowed them to submit challenges if updates were needed. The ECD Broadband Office website served as a resource for residents to access the map and find instructions on how to submit a challenge. Although the office was not responsible for administering the map, they were available to help filter questions and troubleshoot issues. Residents were asked to complete any challenges for their addresses by January 13th.
TN Broadband Accessibility Map Summer/Fall 2023
Connected Nation, contracted by TNECD, created a broadband map covering all 95 counties in Tennessee. It provides information on broadband technology, internet speeds, and providers and is searchable by address. TNECD and Connected Nation validated and adjusted the map based on public feedback. The Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations (TACIR) recommended the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Map in 2021 and was open for public comment from April to July 2022.
TN Broadband Accessibility Map
Under contract with TNECD, Connected Nation requested data from providers in Tennessee to create a statewide broadband map. The map covers all 95 counties in Tennessee and is searchable by address, offering information on broadband technology, internet speeds, available providers, and more.
In 2021, the Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations (TACIR) recommended that Tennessee join several other states in creating a broadband availability map. The map is intended to be used for state broadband funding decisions, as well as serve as a community planning resource.
The Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Map was available for public comment from April 18 - July 8, 2022. The public comment period is now closed.
TNECD worked with Connected Nation to make any necessary validations and adjustments to the map based on the public comments received.
For all questions, please reach out to ECD.Broadband@tn.gov.