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Tennessee Emergency Broadband Fund

The COVID-19 pandemic has elevated the importance of critical broadband infrastructure to facilitating participation in telemedicine, distance learning, and telecommuting. Reliable, affordable broadband service is necessary to meet these needs in Tennessee’s communities.

The Tennessee Emergency Broadband Fund utilizes a portion of the State of Tennessee’s federal aid known as the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) enhance broadband infrastructure and access to individuals and families affected during the COVID-19 pandemic by the lack of broadband access in their area.

Projects must meet the CRF criteria, which is designed to address public health and safety by improving opportunities for telemedicine, distance learning, and public safety.


Program Materials

Scoring Rubric



Points Possible

COVID-19 Pandemic Response

Necessary for community’s ability to respond to COVID-19 pandemic impact


Sustainability,  Implementation  Readiness, Project Feasibility

Technical, managerial, and financial capabilities of the applicant demonstrating the ability to complete the proposed project within the designated timeline.


FY20 (round 3) unfunded state grant applications


Leveraged and Match Funds

Additional match (cannot be from another federal or state program) provided by grantee or other leveraged funds


Speed, Scalability and Affordability

Scalability of technology will provide a long-term solution for the community.  Speed and affordability are competitive and will meet community needs.






Grant application available

Program Guidelines posted

Pre-Recorded Application Webinar


Grant Application Due at 2 PM CDT


Public Comment Period begins


Public Comment Period ends at 5pm CT


Award Announcement


Project Completion


State funds disbursement deadline

Application Instructions - Please Read

  • Navigate to and click “Register”
    • You must create a username and password. If you’re submitting more than one application, this will allow you to work on them simultaneously.
  • Once logged in, click “Begin New Application”
  • You must click “Save” at the bottom of the page to save your work or before starting on another application.
  • You will see a “Warning” at the top of the page until you have completed all necessary fields for submission.
  • On the home screen, your application status will remain “In Progress” until you have completed all necessary fields and click submit. You will receive a confirmation email and the status will change to “Completed.”

The grant application contains two sections: Applicant Info and Grant Application.

Applicants submitting more than one application should complete the applicant info section once and the grant application section for each individual project.

Application must be reviewed by a professional engineer (PE) or another qualified individual.

Note: eligible expenses include construction and materials only. Given the limited CARES Act timeline requirement, applicants should only apply for projects that are shovel ready and fully engineered. Projects must be completed by December 15, 2020 to qualify.

Final application deadline is August 6th, 2020 at 2:00 PM CDT. Applicants who have incomplete applications as of this date will not be considered.

We will not accept letters or other attachments via postal mail.

Match Requirement

The grant will cover up to 80% of eligible project expenses. Grantee match of 20% may not include federal grant or in-kind funds.

Applicants with additional local match will receive additional points in the scoring process.


Any questions regarding this application must be submitted in writing via email to:
Recipient: TNECD Broadband, at
Subject Line: TNECD Emergency Broadband Fund Application Question