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Broadband Stimulus: What have we accomplished, where do we go next?

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In 2009, the Dept. of Commerce's BTOP agency, and the Dept. of Agriculture's RUS agency committed $7.5 billion to organizations and companies to deliver broadband infrastructure, adoption programs and computing centers to communities in need across the U.S. This week many of the BTOP grant recipients gather in Washington, DC to compare notes and progress at the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition's annual conference.   

SHLB Executive Director John Windhausen gives us an overview of some of the successes and challenges of this year's attendees, as well as those of FCC broadband grant recipients. Patricia Campbell, Director of External Relations of the Keystone Initiative for Network Based Education (KINBER) recently completed a 1600-mile middle mile network throughout Pennsylvania. KINBER is raising community awareness of broadband and economic development. 

There have been good strides as middle mile projects concluded and focus shifts to community last mile efforts. Support programs are transitioning into self-sufficiency models, and FCC programs such as eRate are expanding infrastructure buildouts. 

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