FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday , October 5, 1999

Contact:Morrie Goodman
202/482-4883

Ranjit De Silva
202/482-4358
RdeSilva@ntia.doc.gov
 


Commerce Secretary Daley Announces $17.6 Million in Matching Fund Awards to Non-Profits for Innovative Uses of Advanced Networking Technologies

Washington, DC - More than $17 million in matching funds is being awarded to 43 non-profit and
governmental organizations across the United States to help fund innovative uses of advanced
networking technologies, the Clinton-Gore Administration announced. The funds will be used
to improve delivery of social services, enhance the capabilities of our public safety officials, and
to bring the benefits of information technology to underserved areas of the country.

"These investments will help close the digital divide by promoting innovative applications of the Internet and information technology in underserved urban and rural communities." President Clinton said. "These projects demonstrate the remarkable potential of information technology to help create opportunity for all Americans".

"We cannot overestimate the importance of access to the information age tools required to succeed in this global economy," said Secretary Daley. "Tomorrow's economy will demand technological literacy and we must rise to the challenge of ensuring that our workforce of tomorrow will be prepared. Greater access to the Internet creates more users with better skills and greater demand for services. This year's grant recipients are truly leading the way in the use of new computer and information technologies that will help transform people's lives," said Secretary Daley.

The Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) administers the Telecommunications and Information Infrastructure Assistance Program (TIIAP), which awards grants annually to non-profit organizations and state and local governments, for innovative, yet practical, projects using information technologies. This year's 43 grant recipients were chosen from over 702 applicants. The $17.6 million in TIIAP funds will be matched by $21 million in funding from non-Federal sources, resulting in a $38.6 million investment in our nation's information infrastructure.

"In awarding this year's grants, we noticed several interesting and important trends," said Larry Irving, assistant secretary of Commerce and administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). "Specifically, we are pleased to see that more and morecommunities are making comprehensive databases and advanced communication tools available to their citizens and community leaders, empowering them to more effectively determine the community's needs and target resources better."

"Our nation's health care organizations are finding niche areas where telemedicine can help improve the quality of care being delivered and, in some cases even save lives, as well as saving costs. And, rural communities are finding more ways to bring educational opportunities, access to social services, and health care to its most isolated citizens."

This year's grants include:

"The lessons learned from these grants will be shared across the nation and throughout the world. There is tremendous global interest in learning how the tools of the 21st century can be used to improve the quality of lives," said Irving. "The experiences of these TIIAP grant recipients will help inform those who are just beginning to determine how to bring the benefits of new technologies to their communities and villages."

Descriptions of each of the 43 grant recipients, along with contact information, are posted on NTIA's website at http://www.ntia.doc.gov.
 

"We encourage people who are interested in learning about the grant program to visit the website or call us at (202) 482-2048," said Bernadette McGuire-Rivera, administrator of NTIA's grants office.

The TIIAP program was initiated in 1994. It has awarded $135 million in award funds that has spurred over $339 million in total investments.

NTIA serves as the principal adviser to the executive branch on domestic and international telecommunications issues. TIIAP awards grants annually to non-profit organizations to help bring the benefits of technology to rural and underserved areas.
 


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