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Common Sense Memo_Broadband Legislation Examples
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To: NewDEAL Leaders

From: Common Sense Media Staff

Date: 7/26/2022

Subject: Examples of Supportive/Problamatic Broadband Legislation ___________________________________________________________________________

This memo is a follow up to questions raised during the recent digital divide panel, below are several examples of bad broadband legislation and good broadband legislation. We’ve included the legislative language itself (italicized), a brief analysis, and links to relevant The Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) rules. Common Sense is happy to provide an independent perspective on legislation in your state, connect with us by reaching out to Drew ( and Amina (

Bad Broadband Legislation

  1. The Department shall use money from the grant program only for the exclusive purpose of awarding grants to applicants for projects that are limited to the construction and deployment of broadband service into unserved areas in the State and for the Department's costs to administer the program.

  1. The Department shall not, directly or indirectly, award grants to a governmental entity or educational institution or affiliate to own, purchase, construct, operate, or maintain a communications network, or to provide service to any residential or commercial premises.

  1. Except as required pursuant to federal law, the commission shall not require the recipient of a grant to do either of the following as a condition of receiving that grant:

  1. Offer a service at a fixed price for more than five years.

  2. Offer a service to all customers at a specified rate.

  1. Duplicative and premature performance audits and oversight processes.

Good Broadband Legislation

  1. The creation of a California Connect Corps for the purposes of promoting digital inclusion and literacy through community outreach to covered populations. The California Connect Corps members providing the services enumerated in this paragraph may include, but are not limited to, covered populations. Members shall receive paid compensation, free IT career training, and supportive services during their term of service.
  1. Digital navigation support to connect individuals with digital resources, including affordable plans for high-speed internet, devices, or skills training.
  2. One-on-one support and tutoring for individuals enrolled in a digital literacy course.
  3. Technical support, including, but not limited to, answering questions about how to use devices and troubleshoot technical issues.
  4. Support for individuals seeking to access or enroll in social services and workforce development resources online.

  1. Beginning in the 2022 school year and in each school year thereafter through the 2025 school year, each school board shall submit an annual report to the Virginia Department of Education and the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development [the state broadband agency] listing each student's 9-1-1 address that does not have broadband access