The United States is currently under the administration of President Joe Biden who, we know, believes in technological advancements and infrastructure advancements for the country. We can call him a tech-savvy President which, honestly, is what we need in these digital times.
According to recent reports, the United States House of Representatives has passed a historic infrastructure bill that includes capital allocations towards different sectors including energy systems and broadband systems. The administration is allocating USD 1.2 trillion towards advancements in trains, energy systems and planes. This investment includes the country’s largest investment in advancing broadband internet, a whopping USD 65 billion, for the first time in history. As per a report by Popsci, President Biden is expected to sign this historic bill into law on Monday.
Internet is a very crucial part of our lives, and we have realized that since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. There are about 30 million Americans that do not have high-speed internet connectivity because of no broadband infrastructure. There are areas where the internet speed is limited, so much so, that a student will not be able to attend his online classes and a parent will not be able to work from home. These are the issues that were raised during the COVID-19 pandemic and fortunately, the government took note of it. This infrastructure bill is certainly in line to sort this issue by providing high-speed internet connectivity to every household there is, from wall to wall in America.
The bill, once it becomes a law will call for private companies that are interested to build this broadband infrastructure for the government, giving an estimate of how much this will cost. As mentioned in a report by Popsci, a United States program called the Affordable Connectivity Fund seeks to address the budget cost of a high-speed internet connection per month. The lower the cost the better. This program is in continuation with the USD 3.2 billion Emergency Broadband Benefit Program that was started during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic to help the low-income houses to sustain with online services, as much as possible.
As per the bill, around USD 2.75 billion will be invested in digital equity plans and USD 2 billion will go towards providing internet services to indigenous communities.