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Gila River Indian Community awarded $4.4 million to expand broadband

The Gila River Indian Community received a $4.4 million dollar grant from the Biden administration’s American Rescue Plan to help improve access to and use of broadband internet service among tribal citizens.... Read more»

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Biden inks deal to supply low-income homes with free internet

The White House announced a partnership Monday with 20 internet providers to bring high-speed plans to low-income customers who qualify for federal assistance, a population numbering in the tens of millions. ... Read more»

Standardized tests in their current format are 'incredibly antiquated'

Before the pandemic, a growing number of parents, educators and advocates criticized how students were tested and the importance placed on statewide tests - now, experts on both sides of the debate say this is the moment to reconsider testing.... Read more»

Cyber experts were braced for Russian attacks before Biden’s warning

When President Joe Biden told business leaders recently that it was their “patriotic obligation” to protect their networks from likely Russian cyberattacks, security officials in Arizona agreed with a nod – and a shrug. ... Read more»

Shadegg report from 'audit' finds no internet connection for ballot tabulation equipment

Maricopa County’s ballot tabulation system was never connected to the internet during the 2020 election and there were no routers to inspect, concluded a team of experts assembled by former Congressman John Shadegg as part of the so-called “audit” of the last presidential election. ... Read more»

Decline in federal grant funding for local elections criticized by advocates

The $1.5 trillion omnibus spending bill passed by Congress last week includes $75 million in Help America Vote Act grants — a major reduction compared to years past, and experts say the amount is insufficient to fund local elections and leaves local election offices without resources.... Read more»

Infamous Russian troll farm appears to be source of anti-Ukraine propaganda

A pro-Putin network of dozens of accounts spread across Twitter, TikTok and Instagram whose behavior, content and coordination are consistent with Russian troll factory the Internet Research Agency are spreading similar or identical text, photos and videos across accounts and platforms.... Read more»

Affordable broadband program making a dent in the digital divide

More than 10 million low-income households have lower internet costs thanks to the Broadband Affordability Program - part of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure deal - which gives qualifying households up to $30 off their monthly internet bill and up to $75 if they live on tribal lands. ... Read more»

Vicious circle: Tribal broadband program hindered by lack of broadband

The federal government’s effort to fund expanded broadband infrastructure in Indian Country overlooked a fundamental issue, advocates say - many tribes did not have the broadband access needed to apply for the funding that would let them improve broadband access.... Read more»

Free Wi-Fi headed to Phoenix school districts to help end digital divide

An initiative funded by the 2020 CARES Act will help Phoenix schools bridge the digital divide by creating the Phoenix Digital Education Connection Canopy, a broadband network designed to provide free Wi-Fi to 250,000 families who have students in 13 Phoenix districts.... Read more»

The affordability gap is the biggest part of the digital divide

High-speed internet at home is a necessity for American families - however, 28.2 million U.S. households lack what has become a basic need, and issues around broadband affordability disproportionately affect low-income, Black, and Latinx communities. ... Read more»

Tucson wireless program helps connect people to Internet

The City of Tucson is providing wireless internet access to some members of the community so they can engage in support remote learning, teleworking, and access to virtual services. ... Read more»

Arizona robocalls dip as FCC rules kick in; advocates say more should be done

Robocalls to Arizonans dropped by more than 3 million in July, to about 84.4 million for the month, as the first phase of a new federal mandate took effect that requires phone companies to implement anti-robocall measures. ... Read more»

Guest opinion

Taylor: Broadband Internet must be part of 'building back better'

Even though the United States has the best broadband in the world at the best value, 19 million Americans still don't have access to broadband — which is clearly an essential service in 2021.... Read more»

Native Americans use technology to keep traditions, language alive during pandemic

Many Native people have found innovative ways throughout the pandemic to continue sharing their culture despite physical distancing restrictions. Social media groups have provided some remedies, in ways that may continue after the pandemic wanes.... Read more»

FCC grants no-cost broadband spectrum licenses to 11 Arizona tribes

The Federal Communications Commission has granted broadband spectrum licenses to 11 Arizona tribes in what FCC Chairman Ajit Pai called “a major step forward in our efforts to close the digital divide on Tribal lands.”... Read more»

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