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Broadband Infrastructure

Overview

Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds may be used to invest in broadband infrastructure.
Treasury’s Interim Final Rule provides that investments in broadband be made in areas that are currently
unserved or underserved—lacking a wireline connection that reliably delivers minimum speeds of 25
Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload.

Using these funds, applicants generally should propose broadband infrastructure projects with modern
technologies in mind, specifically those projects that deliver services offering reliable 100 Mbps download
and 100 8 Mbps upload speeds, unless impracticable due to topography, geography, or financial cost. In
addition, applicants are encouraged to pursue fiber optic investments. In view of the wide disparities in
broadband access, assistance to households to support internet access or digital literacy is an eligible use
to respond to the public health and negative economic impacts of the pandemic, as detailed above.

Treasury’s Interim Final Rule encourages recipients to ensure that broadband projects use strong labor
standards, including project labor agreements and community benefits agreements that offer wages at or
above the prevailing rate and include local hire provisions.


Eligibility

Government Organizations:

  • State Agencies
  • County governments
  • City or township governments
  • Special district governments

Georgia Professional Associations and Organizations:

  • Industry Trade Associations
  • Business Organizations
  • Trade/Professional/ Non-Profit Organizations


Reporting Requirements Include (but are not limited to):

The following information will be required in Project and Expenditure Reports:

Project Descriptions

Project descriptions must describe the project in sufficient detail to provide understanding of the major
activities that will occur and will be required to be between 50 and 250 words. Projects should be defined
to include only closely related activities directed toward a common purpose.

Expenditures

Recipients will be asked to report:

  • Current period obligation
  • Cumulative obligation
  • Current period expenditure
  • Cumulative expenditure

Project Status

Once a project is entered the recipient will be asked to report on project status each reporting period, in
four categories:

  • Not Started
  • Completed less than 50 percent
  • Completed 50 percent or more
  • Completed

Required Programmatic Data for Infrastructure Projects (EC 5):

For all projects listed under the Water, Sewer, and Broadband Expenditure Categories (see Appendix 1),
more detailed project-level information is required. Each project will be required to report expenditure
data as described above, but will also report the following information:

All infrastructure projects (EC 5):

  • Projected/actual construction start date (month/year)
  • Projected/actual initiation of operations date (month/year)
  • Location (for broadband, geospatial location data)
  • For projects over $10 million:
  • a.   A recipient may provide a certification that, for the relevant project, all laborers and
          mechanics employed by contractors and subcontractors in the performance of such project
          are paid wages at rates not less than those prevailing, as determined by the U.S. Secretary of
          Labor in accordance with subchapter IV of chapter 31 of title 40, United States Code
          (commonly known as the “Davis-Bacon Act”), for the corresponding classes of laborers and
          mechanics employed on projects of a character similar to the contract work in the civil
          subdivision of the State (or the District of Columbia) in which the work is to be performed, or
          by the appropriate State entity pursuant to a corollary State prevailing-wage-in-construction
          law (commonly known as “baby DavisBacon Acts”). If such certification is not provided, a
          recipient must provide a project employment and local impact report detailing:
    • The number of employees of contractors and sub-contractors working on the project;
    • The number of employees on the project hired directly and hired through a third party;
    • The wages and benefits of workers on the project by classification; and
    • Whether those wages are at rates less than those prevailing.
    • Recipients must maintain sufficient records to substantiate this information upon
      request.
    b.   A recipient may provide a certification that a project includes a project labor agreement,
          meaning a pre-hire collective bargaining agreement consistent with section 8(f) of the
          National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 158(f)). If the recipient does not provide such
          certification, the recipient must provide a project workforce continuity plan, detailing:
    • How the recipient will ensure the project has ready access to a sufficient supply of
      appropriately skilled and unskilled labor to ensure high-quality construction throughout
      the life of the project;
    • How the recipient will minimize risks of labor disputes and disruptions that would
      jeopardize timeliness and cost-effectiveness of the project; and
    • How the recipient will provide a safe and healthy workplace that avoids
      delays and costs associated with workplace illnesses, injuries, and fatalities;
    • Whether workers on the project will receive wages and benefits that will secure an
      appropriately skilled workforce in the context of the local or regional labor market; and
    • Whether the project has completed a project labor agreement.
    c.   Whether the project prioritizes local hires.
    d.   Whether the project has a Community Benefit Agreement, with a description of any such
          agreement.

Broadband projects [Expenditure Category 5] (EC 5.16-5.17):

  • Speeds/pricing tiers to be offered, including the speed/pricing of its affordability offering
  • Technology to be deployed
  • Miles of fiber
  • Cost per mile
  • Cost per passing
  • Number of households (broken out by households on Tribal lands and those not on Tribal lands)
    projected to have increased access to broadband meeting the minimum speed standards in areas
    that previously lacked access to service of at least 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload
  •  
    • Number of households with access to minimum speed standard of reliable 100 Mbps
      symmetrical upload and download
    • o Number of households with access to minimum speed standard of reliable 100 Mbps
      download and 20 Mbps upload
  •  
  • Number of institutions and businesses (broken out by institutions on Tribal lands and those not
    on Tribal lands) projected to have increased access to broadband meeting the minimum speed
    standards in areas that previously lacked access to service of at least 25 Mbps download and 3
    Mbps upload, in each of the following categories: business, small business, elementary school,
    secondary school, higher education institution, library, healthcare facility, and public safety
    organization
  •  
    • Specify the number of each type of institution with access to the minimum speed standard of
      reliable 100 Mbps symmetrical upload and download; and o Specify the number of each type
      of institution with access to the minimum speed standard of reliable 100 Mbps download and
      20 Mbps upload

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