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Delaware Broadband Initiative

Roll of fiber optic cable on the ground

Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program

On May 2, 2024 NTIA approved the Delaware Broadband Office’s (DBO’s) BEAD Initial Proposal Volume 2. This authorizes the DBO to begin the subgrantee selection process. This is the process that will end with subgrant awards to qualified entities to build out high-speed internet infrastructure to bring service to every unserved and underserved address in Delaware.

There are two phases to the subgrantee selection process. First, prospective applicants will be screened during the “Prequalification” phase. During this phase, prospective applicants will submit detailed information about their administrative, financial, organizational, and technical capabilities along with information about their workforce development plans. The DBO will review the submissions to determine which prospective applicants are qualified to move to the next phase of the process: competitively scored bidding on project areas.

Prospective applicants should carefully review the Prequalification Phase Guide as well as the final version of the Initial Proposal Volume 2.

Applicants will submit their materials via Delaware’s Bonfire procurement portal. A link to the Bonfire application will be posted on this webpage when the application is live.

Applicants will be able to submit Prequalification Applications via Bonfire starting on Thursday, June 13, 2024. The deadline for submitting Prequalification materials is 5:00 PM on Tuesday, July 9, 2024.

On May 14, 2024, DTI conducted a webinar on the Prequalification Phase.

Prequalification Phase Webinar

Questions about the Prequalification Application?
To support openness, fairness, and competition in its BEAD grant efforts, DTI will have a formal process for applicants to submit questions about the substance of the Prequalification Application. Applicants can submit questions until 5:00 PM on Friday, May 31. Questions must be submitted to Questions submitted to other email addresses will not be processed. Questions received after the deadline will not be considered except in extraordinary circumstances (substantive errors in application materials, conflict between application materials and Initial Proposal Volume 2 or the BEAD NOFO).

DTI will answer all questions in a consolidated “Q&A” document published on this page and on the Bonfire portal.

To qualify for BEAD funding, the Delaware Broadband Office needs to put together a series of four plans for approval by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA):

Once each plan is approved, Delaware will award funding to qualified internet service providers (ISPs) selected through a competitive process. The ISPs will then deploy high-speed internet infrastructure to homes and businesses across Delaware.

The Delaware Broadband Office is moving as quickly as possible to qualify for this funding and bring high-speed internet to all Delawareans. Delaware is one of the fastest moving states through this process, and Governor John Carney has set the goal of Delaware being the first state in the nation to be fully connected to high-speed internet.

BEAD Timeline

June 26, 2023

NTIA announced Delaware will receive $107 million from the BEAD program

July 5, 2023

Delaware submits Five Year Action Plan to NTIA

July 25, 2023

NTIA approves Delaware's Five Year Action Plan

August 2, 2023

Delaware posts Initial Proposal Volume One for public comment

October 10, 2023

Delaware submits Initial Proposal Volume One to NTIA

October 13, 2023

Delaware posts Initial Proposal Volume Two for public comment

November 28, 2023

Delaware submits Initial Proposal Volume Two to NTIA

December 28, 2023

NTIA approves Delaware's Initial Proposal Volume One

1st Quarter 2024

NTIA approves Initial Proposal Volume One
Delaware begins State Challenge Process

2nd Quarter 2024

Delaware releases Request for Applications for ISPs to bid on BEAD-funded high-speed internet infrastructure deployment

4th Quarter 2024

Delaware submits results of RFP to NTIA for approval (the "Final Plan")

State Challenge Process

See where challenges are being submitted.

Search BEAD-Eligible Addresses

Delaware will be accepting challenges from January 17 to February 16, 2024.

NTIA requires that all states receiving BEAD funding run a "State Challenge Process." This is an occasion for certain organizations to "challenge" Delaware's list of homes and businesses that do not have access to high-speed internet. ISPs, non-profit organizations, and local governments can submit challenges in the Delaware Challenge Portal.

This process is Delaware's opportunity to perfect our list and ensure that BEAD funding is going where it is needed. After the challenge submission period concludes, Delaware will evaluate the challenges and release the final version of list of BEAD-eligible addresses on or around April 22, 2024.