Graphic - Use Your Voice text is in green. A simplified graphic of a person's head is on the left with lines representing audio and leading to a dark circle graphic with "DEA" and icons for laptop, Wifi, and Skills (puzzle piecees)

States have officially started releasing their State Digital Equity Plans and opening their public comment period. Below are the plans that are live as of July 6, 2023:

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will regularly post live Digital Equity plans on this website. If you’re unsure about when your state’s digital equity plan will be available for public comment, we recommend bookmarking the link and checking it frequently.

The public comment period is a mandatory step in the State Digital Equity Plan process that solicits a public response and comments on the draft plan. 

Administering entities across all 50 states, DC, and the US territories received their State Digital Equity Planning Grants, with exactly one year to complete their digital equity plan, release it for public comment, and submit it to NTIA. Most states are still currently in the process of crafting their plans. 

To know when to expect your state’s draft plan and open public comment period, contact your state’s administering entity and check out the date they received their state planning grant award to get a better idea of their timeline. 

We encourage you to express your communities’ needs and holistic requirements in your states’ public comment period proactively and clearly, ensuring an accurate representation of your communities to bridge the specific digital divides they face. Please spread the news, share your valuable input, and make your communities’ voices heard!

Updates on the Digital Equity Act

The Digital Equity Act recognizes the historical and systemic disadvantages specific populations face in the digital divide. It is crucial to acknowledge that achieving digital equity among different populations and communities will present unique barriers. These obstacles encompass various factors such as broadband availability, affordability, device access, digital skills, and program sustainability. Digital Equity Act funding plays a significant role in overcoming these challenges and promoting equity. Tailoring solutions that address the unique needs of each group is essential.

We expect NTIA to release the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the next phase – State Digital Equity Capacity Grants – in the first quarter of 2024 and make awards by the third quarter. This means sub-awards or state-run digital equity grant programs will likely appear around fall or winter of 2024-2025. At this time, we don’t know exactly when NTIA will publish the Digital Equity Competitive Grant NOFO, but we estimate it will be in the third or fourth quarter of 2024.