The Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program requires each state to submit a five-year plan and an Initial Proposal that is broken up into Volume 1 and Volume 2 which shares information regarding preparations for BEAD funding. The BEAD NOFO details the information to be provided, including but not limited to, the structure and activities of the state broadband office (BEAM), current and projected funding sources, data collection strategies, partnerships, alignment with other state agencies, stakeholder engagement strategies, identification of barriers and obstacles to service, key implementation strategies, expected costs, and a timeline for universal service.
The 5-year plan includes strategies and variables that will necessarily change over the course of BEAD implementation. BEAM anticipates updating the plan as new information becomes available. The public comment period closed at 12:00 pm on September 25, 2023.
The Draft Initial Proposal Volume 1 includes a listing of unserved, underserved, community anchor institutions, and existing federal funding sources for broadband expansion and access in Mississippi. As required by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, Volume 1 also provides details about Mississippi's plan to conduct a fair and transparent challenge process. Local units of government, non-profit organizations, and internet service providers are eligible to challenge whether a location is served or not. The 30-day public comment period is now closed after running from October 12 through November 13, 2023.
Attachment A: Existing Broadband Funding Sources
Attachment B: unserved.csv
Attachment C: underserved.csv
Attachment D: cai.csv
To visualize the unserved, underserved, and locations that already have dedicated federal funds a link to BEAM's BEAD Map is below:
*BEAM has received initial comments from NTIA and currently in the curing process. Once the curing process is complete BEAM will post a final version.
The Draft Initial Proposal Volume 2 details the process and scoring that Mississippi will use in subgrantee selection, along with additional requirements and certifications contained in the federal BEAD Notice of Funding Opportunity. The BEAD NOFO and Volume 2 guidance can be found at BroadbandUSA.gov. The period of public comment for Volume 2 was open from November 1, 2023,through December 1, 2023. BEAM has reviewed all comments and incorporated changes as appropriate prior to the submission of Mississippi’s final combined Initial Proposal.
Exhibit A: Local Coordination Documentation Tracker
Exhibit B: Letter to Chief Cyrus Ben
Exhibit D: Priority Broadband Projects Scoring Rubric
*BEAM has submitted Volume 2 but has not received any initial feedback at this time.