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California Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco



Media Contact: Terrie Prosper, 415.703.1366, news@cpuc.ca.gov



SAN FRANCISCO, October 5, 2009 -- The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today announced it was awarded $2.3 million under the State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program to collect information on broadband service availability in the state and create an interactive web-based map that will give California residents the ability to access information about the services and providers available at their own address. State and federal policymakers will also be able to use this information to analyze the status of broadband deployment in California and across the nation, and to develop broadband policies aimed at making advanced services available everywhere, regardless of issues such as urban/rural location or income.

The State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program is administered by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the Department of Commerce. The NTIA received grant applications from all 56 states, territories, and the District of Columbia, and today's announcement indicated that the CPUC is in the first group of four applications being granted.

The CPUC's grant also includes $500,000 for non-mapping activities related to broadband demand and adoption issues. The CPUC is partnering with California State University, Chico Research Foundation for this portion of the grant activities, through a four-year agreement. The CSU Chico Research Foundation will identify subscribership levels within census blocks to develop a plan to identify barriers to broadband adoption, develop marketing and promotional material that will be utilized to promote broadband adoption and usage, and work with broadband providers to encourage high speed Internet services. These tasks will fulfill the requirements of the broadband planning portion of this grant program while helping the CPUC in its efforts to close the digital divide.

The CPUC oversees the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF), which was established by the CPUC on December 20, 2007. It is a two-year, $100 million effort to provide 40 percent matching infrastructure grants to broadband providers willing to put up the matching 60 percent of funds and to serve the nearly 2,000 California communities that are currently unserved and underserved by broadband. For information on CASF, please visit www.cpuc.ca.gov/CASF.

You can visit California's economic recovery web portal at www.recovery.ca.gov.

Read the NTIA's press release on the grants awarded today at http://www.ntia.doc.gov/press/2009/BTOP_MappingAwards_091005.htmlwww.ntia.doc.gov/press/2009/BTOP_MappingAwards_091005.html.

For more information on the CPUC, please visit www.cpuc.ca.gov.


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