Governor Moore Launches Maryland ActNow Campaign to Bridge Digital Divide in Maryland – News Releases – News – Governor Wes Moore’s Office

ANNAPLES, MD Governor Wes Moore today launched the Maryland ActNow campaign in partnership with EducationSuperHighway, reaffirming the Moore-Miller administrations’ commitment to bridging the digital divide by extending broadband Internet access to all of Maryland and making it more affordable. The governor was joined by US Department of Commerce Deputy Secretary Don Graves, state and local officials, and the leadership of the nonprofit EducationSuperHighway to outline the campaign’s partnership, part of an effort that also includes $267 million in federal funding to support Maryland’s broadband infrastructure.

Internet access is no longer optional, it is essential and no one should be barred from the Internet because of their income or where they live, Governor Moore said. When it comes to getting people online, our administration is very clear: We won’t stop until every single Marylander has reliable and affordable Internet access. The discounts offered under this program and the investments we are making have the power to expand opportunities for Marylanders across the state. Leaving no one behind means bringing everyone online.


ActNow is a public awareness campaign to increase awareness of and enrollment in the Federal Communications Commission’s Accessible Connectivity Program. The program offers a $30 Internet access discount for low-income families. The campaign, a partnership with EducationSuperHighway and 20 community organizations across the state, will get eligible Maryland families enrolled in the Affordable Connectivity Program before the start of the new school year.

Too many people are being left behind because they can’t afford high-speed Internet at home, but 1 in 4 American households now qualifies for the Affordable Connectivity Program, said EducationSuperHighway founder and CEO Evan Marwell. We applaud Governor Moore’s leadership in raising awareness of this critical program to connect Marylanders to the home internet they need to thrive in today’s world and bridge the digital divide.

EducationSuperHighway works to bridge the digital divide for the 18 million households who have access to the internet but can’t afford to connect. The organization focuses on America’s most disconnected communities, where more than 25% of people don’t have the Internet.

On June 26, Governor Moore announced that Maryland would use more than $267 million in federal funding from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration through the Broadband Equity, Access, and Distribution program, part of the President Joseph R. Bidens Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, to bring high-speed Internet access to all of Maryland. The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Developments Office of Statewide Broadband is developing a plan for funding the rollout, informed by public webinars and awareness conferences held this past spring.

Today, access to the Internet is nothing short of a basic need. That’s why we fought for landmark funding in the Infrastructure Modernization Act to connect Marylanders in both rural and urban communities that still lack reliable and affordable broadband, said US Senator Chris Van Hollen. I am pleased to see our state leading the way in leveraging these federal investments so we can achieve our goal of closing the digital divide once and for all.

In Maryland, there are more than 44,000 broadband locations that are underserved or underserved. Each of these locations represents a generations-old farm that cannot harvest using modern tools, a fledgling small business stuck in an analog age, an elderly or disabled person cut off from vital telehealth care, or a young student missing out on the life-changing opportunities that the digital world can provide.
US Deputy Secretary of Commerce Don Graves said. Maryland will receive an investment of nearly $268 million to give everyone in the state access to the Internet. Many have tried to bridge this gap to expand broadband infrastructure to every corner of this country, but President Biden is making it a reality and proving once again that there is no limit to what this country can do when we work together.

Broadband is the utility that will drive economic outcomes in much the same way water and sanitation systems have done for the last 150 years,
said Jake Day, secretary of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. With the NTIA investing a quarter of a billion dollars in our state, our goal of bridging the digital divide and solving inequalities for countless Marylanders is closer than ever.

Since it was founded in 2017, the Maryland State Broadband Department of Housing and Community Development has invested more than $300 million in broadband infrastructure and equity programs. That investment has provided high-speed Internet access to approximately 52,000 previously unserved homes and businesses across the state.


Today’s event was held at the Michael E. Busch Library in Annapolis, one of Maryland’s libraries that is taking steps to ensure residents can take advantage of the Affordable Connectivity Program through digital literacy classes and community partnerships. The entire library staff is fully trained in the benefits of the programs and how to help Marylanders enroll.

Public Libraries serve as a connector for the community, using our resources and partnerships to educate, enrich and inspire the lives of all people, said Skip Auld, managing director of the Anne Arundel County Public Library. We are proud to work with federal, state and local officials along with community partners to help build a future where all people connect, grow and belong.


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