Statement on the Obama Administration’s Announcement of ARRA Investments in Broadband - Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
WASHINGTON -- Over the last decade, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has worked with public libraries across the country to provide Americans with free, reliable access to computers and the Internet. Millions of people rely on this access to do research projects for school and work, find a job, get government information, and keep in touch with family and friends.
With Vice President Joe Biden’s announcement today of the initial broadband grant awards funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the administration and Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will help many more Americans access online economic, educational, and social opportunities.
We commend the NTIA for recognizing the importance of universal access to high-capacity broadband Internet connections and the important role public libraries and other community anchor institutions play in providing this access. The administration's investments in community anchor institutions represent the highest and best use of public funds and are critical to creating universal broadband access for all Americans.
We are committed to working with the NTIA and public libraries to connect all people with opportunities and knowledge and enable them to lead productive lives.