The Government Accountability Office has urged the Executive Branch Office of the President to pursue a national strategy that would align federal broadband programs with fragmented or overlapping purposes and synchronize coordination among agencies that manage such internet access efforts.
GAO said Tuesday the strategy for facilitating program alignment could include legislative proposals from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
The government audit agency made the recommendations after an analysis showed 15 federal entities are administering at least 133 funding programs associated with broadband connectivity and that millions of people in the U.S. do not have access to the service even though federal spending on these initiatives hit $44 billion during the 2015-2020 period.
As part of the audit, GAO had to interview federal officials and 50 nonfederal stakeholders, which include internet providers.
In May, the Biden administration kicked off a $45 billion effort to help everyone in the country gain access to high-speed internet by the end of the decade and NTIA put out three funding opportunity notices as part of the White House’s Internet for All initiative.