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New Jersey Submits Broadband Plans for Public Review

The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities is moving forward with plans for guaranteed high-speed Internet access for all residents of the state. Two draft plans have been released for public input.

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(TNS) — The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) is moving forward with the Murphy Administration's aim to guarantee high-speed Internet access for all New Jersey residents.

Seeking public input, the NJBPU has released draft plans for two significant broadband initiatives: the Broadband Equity Access and Deployment (BEAD) Grant Program and the State's Digital Equity Plan.

"High-speed Internet access has proven to be an essential service that helps deliver educational, professional, and social services and opportunities to thousands of New Jersey residents and businesses daily," said Christine Guhl-Sadovy, President of the NJBPU. "Ensuring residents, community organizations and businesses engage in how we shape our BEAD and Digital Equity programs is essential to their success. I encourage the public, particularly unserved and underserved communities, to participate in this important opportunity to comment on our plans."

Administered by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) under the U.S. Department of Commerce, the BEAD and Digital Equity Programs delegate primary administration and implementation to states and eligible entities. Stemming from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021, these initiatives are part of the broader Biden Administration Internet for All initiative, prioritizing equity across unserved and underserved areas nationwide.

New Jersey received $263,689,548 for its BEAD program from NTIA earlier this year. The state's draft BEAD Initial Proposal Volumes 1 and 2 primarily focus on deploying funding to expand broadband access, especially in unserved/underserved locations. These drafts will undergo further review by NTIA after finalization. Public comment periods are ongoing for both the state's draft Digital Equity Plan and the BEAD Initial Proposal volumes.

The deadline for public comment on the draft BEAD Initial Proposal Volume 1 is Wednesday, November 29, by 5 p.m.

The deadline for public comment on the draft BEAD Initial Proposal Volume 2 is Friday, December 8, by 5 p.m.

Draft documents and instructions for submitting comments can be found at this link.

The Digital Equity Plan, part of the Digital Equity Act (DEA), aims to uplift marginalized communities, focusing on economic and workforce development, education, health, civic engagement, and social outcomes. The DEA has established three primary grant programs: the State Digital Equity Planning Grant, the State Digital Equity Capacity Grant Program, and the Digital Equity Competitive Grant Program. These programs target private sector, public sector, and not-for-profit entities to promote digital equity and inclusion. The deadline for comments on the state's draft Digital Equity Plan is Thursday, November 30 by 5 p.m. To access the draft and submit comments, visit this website.

For further information about The NJBPU Office of Broadband Connectivity and the state's initiatives to ensure Internet for All, visit

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