House Passes $800 Billion Stimulus Package, Replete With Broadband Provisions


The House Wednesday passed the $800 billion-plus economic stimulus package, which included $650 million for DTV-to-analog converter box coupons and DTV education.

It came the same day that a bill that would have unclogged the converter box coupon program, using some of that $650 million to do so, failed to pass in the House, with its fate now in doubt.
The stimulus package also includes $350 million for a broadband data collection effort to allow states to track--and specifically, map--the availability of broadband access, and $2.85 billion to implement a wireless and broadband deployment grants program, with $1B of that set going to wireless.
The grants come with open-access stipulations.
Rolling out broadband to underserved areas, and open access, are two keys in the Obama administration's tech policy agenda.
The bill now goes to the Senate.