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Kansas was the first state in the nation to receive $15 million in U.S. Department of Treasury Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) Funds.

Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT)

To address the digital divide and enhance digital equity across the state, the Kansas Office of Broadband Development (KOBD) announced an application will open for the Capitol Project Fund Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) Equipment and Public Wi-Fi Enablement Program. This initiative is a crucial step in implementing the recently published Kansas Digital Equity Plan, designed to tackle the challenges of broadband accessibility, affordability, and device availability.

“It’s not enough to expand high-speed internet across Kansas – we must also show Kansans of all ages and backgrounds how to make the internet a useful tool in their everyday lives. These funds will provide the devices and skills training to help every Kansan benefit from our investments to make high-speed internet available in their local communities.”   

Governor Laura Kelly

Program Information

Program Overview

Executive Summary

Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT)

In support of the recently published Kansas Digital Equity (DE) Plan, the KOBD intends to create and launch a series of programs to advance key tenets of the Digital Equity Plan, including the improvement of broadband availability across Kansas, increased access to and adoption of affordable broadband service, and expansion of access to affordable devices with accommodating technical support. As discussed in the Digital Equity Plan, over 153,000 Kansans lack subscriptions to high-speed internet due to inadequate infrastructure, affordability, or inability to access to devices, digital skills knowledge, and support. This is particularly applicable within covered populations. This program is the first of several initiatives to address key areas of Kansans’ needs identified within the Digital Equity Plan. As such, KOBD is launching the Capital Projects Fund (CPF) Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT) program which is an effort to improve access to affordable equipment and reliable Wi-Fi to unserved and underserved public spaces. The ADOPT program is comprised of two sub-programs: 1) Equipment Distribution Program and 2) Public Wi-Fi Enablement Program.

The Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT) program information is captured in two separate sections as documented below:

The Equipment Distribution Program awards grant dollars to eligible entities to make devices available to individuals who do not subscribe to broadband connectivity due to lack of devices and equipment. The program makes available, to qualifying individuals, computers, laptops, and tablets through no-cost, short or long-term loan programs administered by eligible entities.  Subrecipients will be required to prioritize individuals with no device over those receiving devices through other programs (schools, etc.). The primary objective of this program is to award funding to eligible entities to distribute no-cost devices and equipment to critical need individuals who lack devices and equipment.  Eligible entities (i.e. – sub-recipients) will retain ownership of the devices throughout the term of the loan. 

  • Max Individual Award: $500,000
  • Required Applicant Match: None

The Public Wi-Fi Enablement Program will provide access to high-quality, reliable public Wi-Fi based broadband in Kansas.  Public Wi-Fi applications will be accepted with priority given to applications that address unserved and economically distressed areas which have a compelling need for free and reliable broadband services that bridge critical access gaps to support quality of life considerations.  Applicants are expected to engage community leaders and stakeholders in the development of projects that will benefit Kansas citizens and communities.  Grantees will be required to provide free public Wi-Fi services within the proposed service area that directly enable work, education, and health monitoring for at least five years from the completion of the Project.

  • Max Individual Award: $1 million
  • Required Applicant Match: 10%

Equipment Distribution Templates

Public Wi-Fi Enablement Templates

Program Summary

ADOPT Basics

The ADOPT program is intended to address the following priorities:

  • Equipment Distribution:
    • Total program funding available: Up to $14.7M in grant awards will be available across both sub-programs for applications best meeting the program guidelines
    • Solicitation date: December 7, 2023
    • Application window: seven (7) weeks
    • Potential award date: After May 31, 2024
    • Project period: December 7, 2023 through June 30, 2026
    • Maximum individual award: $500,000
    • Funding source: Capital Projects Fund (CPF) Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) Program
    • KOBD reserves the right to distribute funds geographically to ensure Kansans can equally benefit from the program
    • Governing Compliance Reference: Uniform Guidance (2 CFR Part 200) applies to this program, including the Cost Principles and Single Audit Act requirements
    • Investments in Capital Projects must be carried out in ways that comply with applicable federal laws, including the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Among other requirements contained in 2 CFR Part 200, 2 CFR 200.216 implements certain provisions of the NDAA. It contains prohibitions on the use of grant funds to procure or obtain certain telecommunications and video surveillance services or equipment provided or produced by designated entities, including certain entities owned or controlled by the People’s Republic of China. In addition, 2 CFR 200.471 provides that certain telecommunications and video surveillance costs associated with 2 CFR 200.216 are unallowable
  • Public Wi-Fi
    • Total program funding available: Up to $14.7M in grant awards will be available across both sub-programs for applications best meeting the program guidelines
    • Required applicant match: 10% of the total project cost
    • Solicitation date: December 7, 2023
    • Application window: seven (7) weeks
    • Potential award date: After May 31, 2024
    • Project period: December 7, 2023 through June 30, 2026
    • Maximum individual award: $1 million
    • Funding source: Capital Projects Fund (CPF) Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) Program
    • KOBD reserves the right to distribute funds geographically to ensure Kansans can equally benefit from the program.
    • Governing Compliance Reference: Uniform Guidance (2 CFR Part 200) applies to this program, including the Cost Principles and Single Audit Act requirements
    • Investments in Capital Projects must be carried out in ways that comply with applicable federal laws, including the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Among other requirements contained in 2 CFR Part 200, 2 CFR 200.216 implements certain provisions of the NDAA. It contains prohibitions on the use of grant funds to procure or obtain certain telecommunications and video surveillance services or equipment provided or produced by designated entities, including certain entities owned or controlled by the People’s Republic of China. In addition, 2 CFR 200.471 provides that certain telecommunications and video surveillance costs associated with 2 CFR 200.216 are unallowable
    • “Public Wi-Fi” is defined as Wi-Fi solutions that are able to deliver qualifying broadband speeds serving a specific geographic area.
Grant Timelines

ADOPT Grant Program Timeline

  • December 7, 2023: Grant Webinar, Program Guidelines Posted, Application Window Opens (7 weeks)
  • February 13, 2024: Application Window Closes (5pm CST)
  • February 26, 2024: Public Comment Window Opens (2 weeks)
  • March 11, 2024: Public Comment Window Closes (5pm CST)
  • March 25, 2024: Applicant Response to Public Comment Window Opens (2 weeks)
  • April 8, 2024: Applicant Response to Public Comment Window Closes
  • May 13, 2024: Applicant Interviews and Final Applicant Deliberations (5 weeks)
  • June 14, 2024: Leadership Review
Proposals for Public Comment

The Kansas Office of Broadband Development (KOBD) is committed to promoting transparency and inclusivity in its initiatives aimed at addressing the digital divide and enhancing digital equity across the state. With the introduction of the Capitol Project Fund Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) Equipment and Public Wi-Fi Enablement Program (known to KOBD as ADOPT), KOBD endeavors to bridge the gap in broadband accessibility, affordability, and device availability as outlined in the Kansas Digital Equity Plan.

KOBD has initiated a public comment period for Advancing Digital Opportunity to Promote Technology (ADOPT) program. This process is integral to KOBD’s efforts to optimize investment, uphold fiscal responsibility, and ensure transparency in Kansas. The public comment period will open on February 26, 2024, at 5:00 PM CT and remain open until March 12, 2024, at 5 p.m. CT. All ADOPT Public Project Proposals and associated Public Proposed Service Area Maps (contained within zip files with .KMZ map(s)) are available for public review and commentary during this period. This transparent public comment mechanism facilitates feedback from the public, internet service providers, and stakeholders interested in digital opportunity projects.

Please note that all comments collected during the public comment period will be posted as part of public disclosure, except for information containing specific infrastructure assets deemed “proprietary.” For inquiries regarding the public comment process, please contact KOBD at [email protected].

OrganizationProposed LocationProposed Project
Electro Mundo Technology Services, Inc.Wyandotte countyProject
Community Green FarmsKansas, Cherokee, Crawford, Labette, Montgomery, and NeoshoProject
Grey Snow Management SolutionsITKN Reservation Lands
Brown and Doniphan Counties in Northeast Kansas
Project
Norton County Economic DevelopmentNorton CountyProject
MWD Distribution LLCAnderson, Greenwood, Linn, Wilson, and Woodson countiesProject
Choose Ottawa CountyOttawa CountyProject
Thrive Allen CountyAllen CountyProject
The Healthy Bourbon County Action TeamBourbon CountyProject
Kansas State University – Rural HSState of KansasProject
Kansas State University – Rural MSState of KansasProject
Kansas WorkforceONE62 Counties in central and western KansasProject
Kansas State University – Rural ESState of KansasProject
Kansas City Kansas Community CollegeWyandotte CountyProject
Manhattan-Ogden Unified School District 383Riley CountyProject
OrganizationLocationsProposed ProjectProposed Area
Mokan CommunicationsMiami CountyProjectMap
Cunningham Communication_NorthCentralKansasMitchell County, Cloud County, Osborne County, Jewell County, Republic CountyProjectMap
WTC_ManhattanRileyProjectMap
Wichita Public Library FoundationSedgwickProjectMap
IdeaTek_Wichita EastSedgwickProjectMap
IdeaTek_Wichita WestSedgwick CountyProjectMap
EMTSIWyandotteProjectMap
Entities Eligible to Apply

  • Equipment Distribution:
    • Political subdivisions or entities of political subdivisions
    • Tribal Governments
    • Counties
    • Municipalities
    • Non-profit organizations
    • Those authorized to provide broadband services in the proposed service area(s)including for-profit businesses and organizations
    • Community Action Agencies serving high-poverty/high-need/critical need areas
  • Public Wi-Fi Program
    • Political subdivisions or entities of political subdivisions
    • Tribal Governments
    • Corporations
    • Limited liability companies
    • Co-operatives
    • Electric Utilities
    • Partnerships or other business entities
    • Non-profit organizations
    • Those authorized to provide broadband services in the proposed service area 
Frequently Asked Questions

ADOPT Program Frequently Asked Questions
January 5, 2024

Question: The Digital Connectivity Technology (DCT) program funding you mentioned that will focus on digital skills building appeared to be rolled into this Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT) program.  Is that a correct assumption?  Because it mentions that you can still apply through this program for dollars to improve access to affordable equipment.  I would take this to mean it could be paired with Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) efforts?

Answer: The ADOPT program funding is the DCT dollars.  Our focus of this program is to assist with device distribution and public Wi-Fi.  It is not a focus to pair the ADOPT program funding with ACP efforts, however, device distribution generally lends to those who would be eligible for ACP.  The ADOPT program and ACP program are not dependent on each other but can bolster each other.  The digital skills building (training) is a focus of our soon to be launched DOCK (Digital Opportunity to Connect Kansans) program.

Question:  We are working with several cities that want public Wi-Fi in their parks or downtown areas.  Some of these areas are not necessarily on the economically distressed list or considered “unserved”, but it could be considered public Wi-Fi to help close the digital divide for lower income individuals in the community who need Wi-Fi.  Would that be an option to apply for?

Answer:  Based off the language of the program guidelines and in line with the intention of the program, we are not supporting public Wi-Fi projects outside of areas that are unserved or in a distressed county.  To allow an exception like this could open an undesired opportunity for those projects that are outside of the areas that truly need assistance. 

Please refer to the language from the Advancing Digital Opportunities to Promote Technology (ADOPT) program guidelines listed below regarding location eligibility and economically distressed counties found on the Kansas Office of Broadband Development (KOBD) website:

  • Eligible Locations

The purpose of the grant is to facilitate affordable broadband access to unserved public areas with demonstrated need.  Unserved is defined as designated locations or geographic areas that are without a fixed, terrestrial connection supporting at least 100 Mbps download and 20 Mbps upload speeds.  Geographic areas that are unserved as defined by the Federal Communications Commission Broadband Data Collection tool are qualified to be served by the public Wi-Fi solution (page 18).

  • Economically Distressed Counties

There is a list of counties in Kansas designated as economically distressed on page 34 of the program guidelines and below under “key definitions.”

Question: Are you able to expound on the geo-tracking capability expectations?

Answer: Grantees are expected to tag all devices with property tags or install asset management software on the device.  Each tag should contain a unique identifier to track the device in the inventory.  See pages 6 and 7 of the Program Guidelines for additional information.

Question: Are applicants able to outsource technical assistance services?

Answer: Applicants are able to outsource technical assistance services through partnership arrangements.  Applicants must describe the partner’s role in the project and fully explain the partnership or collaborations with other organizations or stakeholders to fulfill the technical assistance services.  Partners will also be expected to attend the final grant candidates interview session.  For additional details, see pages 12 through 14 of the Program Guidelines regarding partnerships, Letters of Community Support, Documentation Requirements and Application Evaluation Criteria.

Question: What are the expectations of establishing a device loan program?

Answer: The expectations of this program are to award funding to eligible entities to distribute no-cost devices and equipment to critical need individuals who lack devices and equipment.  Subgrantees will be expected to procure, distribute, manage, maintain and technically support internet-connected devices targeted to Kansans in need. 

The program guidelines can be found in “Executive Summary” section of this page or by clicking on this link.

Key Definitions

Adoption Efforts
Adoption goes beyond access to high-speed internet and speaks to the ability of individuals and communities to harness access for quality-of-life implications. These efforts may include digital literacy training, low-income assistance programs (for equipment and/or broadband service), partnerships with co-working or entrepreneurship organizations, awareness or marketing campaigns, service provision to community anchor institutions and/or additional programing, along with other programs designed to meet the needs of the local community.

Applicant Match
At the time of application submission, the applicant must demonstrate available cash reserves in an account(s) of the applicant equal to at least the required amount specified in the sliding scale match table. Matching funds must be used solely for the Project and shall not include any financial assistance from federal sources unless there is a federal statutory exception specifically authorizing the federal financial assistance to be considered as such. An applicant must provide evidence of its ability to comply with this requirement in its application (www.ecfr.gov).

Broadband
Broadband (or high-speed internet) access allows users to access the internet and internet-related services at significantly higher speeds than those available through “dial-up” services. Broadband speeds vary significantly depending on the technology and level of service ordered. For additional information, visit the source of this information: Getting Broadband Q&A | Federal Communications Commission (fcc.gov).

Budget and Financial Requirements
Includes an explanation of costs that correspond with the information included in the project budget spreadsheet. The information should also explain the necessity and basis for costs and reflects only allowable costs consistent with project scope. Content must include the last (2) years of organizations tax returns and / or 990s.

Co-Investment
Any funds provided by sources other than the applicant such as local, county, and eligible state programs or other contributors.

Community Anchor Institution
Community anchor institution means schools, libraries, medical and healthcare providers, public safety entities, community colleges and other institutions of higher education, and other community support organizations and agencies that provide outreach, access, equipment, and support services to facilitate greater use of broadband service by vulnerable populations, including low-income, unemployed, and the aged (www.usac.org).

Community Support (Narrative)
Community partners associated with the project planning, promotion, adoption – description of each party’s commitment and role in the project. Include any involvement by Community Anchor Institutions (CAIs) including municipalities, chambers of commerce, economic development organizations, educational institutions, healthcare organizations, libraries, public safety, businesses, non-profits, and or other community stakeholders.

Covered Population
Covered populations include aging individuals, incarcerated individuals, other than individuals who are incarcerated in a Federal correctional facility; veterans; individuals with disabilities; individuals with a language barrier, including individuals who (i) are English learners; and (ii) have low levels of literacy; individuals who are members of a racial or ethnic minority group; and individuals who primarily reside in a rural area.

Critical Need – Public Wi-Fi Program
When access to broadband resources is unaffordable and/or unavailable, resulting in impediment(s) to participation in work, education, and health monitoring that were caused or exacerbated by the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Economically Distressed Community
KOBD will consider an area economically distressed if either the 2020 per capital BEA PCPI or PCMI metric is below the 80% threshold. The Kansas counties meeting this definition are in the table below:

Table 9: Economically Distressed Counties in Kansas

AllenEllsworthLincolnRiley
AndersonFinneyLinnRooks
AtchisonFordLyonRussell
BartonFranklinMarionScott
BourbonGearyMarshallSeward
BrownGrahamMitchellSmith
ChaseGrantMontgomeryStafford
ChautauquaGreenwoodMorrisStevens
CherokeeHamiltonMortonSumner
ClayHarperNeoshoWashington
CloudHarveyNortonWichita
CowleyJacksonOsageWilson
CrawfordJewellOttawaWoodson
DickinsonKearnyPawneeWyandotte
DoniphanKiowaReno 
EdwardsLabetteRepublic 
ElkLeavenworthRice 

The counties listed above can also be found at the Stats America website via http://www.statsameri-ca.org/distress/distress.aspx.

Last Mile
Last mile refers to the network infrastructure that carries signals from the network to and from the end-user premise. Depending on the network design and density of the area served, the actual distance of the last mile can be relatively short or considerably longer than a mile.

Letters of Commitment / Support
Explicit commitments and roles of committed partners and letters of support as indicated above.

Partnership
A formal relationship between two or more parties that enter into an agreement for the sake of advancing broadband enablement.

Project
An applicant’s proposal.

Project Justification
Narrative to justify the need for this project and relevant data indicators to support the effort. Narrative must include:
• Evidence to make a compelling case for the project relative to the proposed services (and target audiences)
• Detail how programs will directly enable remote work, education, and healthcare monitoring
• Description of how project addresses critical need(s) of communities to be served
• Description of proposed service area (geography) and targeted (critical need) community(ies)

Project Milestones
Project plan that includes information on each stage of the project, covers the entire project period, and aligns to the proposed budget.

Project Plan
Includes executive summary, narrative overview, goals, proposed target critical need communities, geographic area to be covered, partners, stakeholders, intended impact, computer introduction training to enhance device usage, proposed devices, short and long-term benefit to the target communities.
Required Applicant Match
The percentage of funds required by the applicant for the program.

Scalability
The capacity to change the size or scale of the broadband architecture to achieve substantially higher speeds with minimal to no investment.

Service Partners
Letters of commitment/support from ISPs, partners, or sub-contractors associated with project deliverables.

Subsidy
Assistance program(s) that applicants are enrolled in to assist with the monthly cost of services. Federal programs include the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB), or Lifeline.

Underserved
For purposes of the CPF DCT Program, an underserved area is a group of broadband-serviceable locations that the FCC National Broadband Map show as lacking access to (i) a speed of not less than 100 Mbps for downloads; and (ii) a speed of not less than 20 Mbps for uploads, AND (iii) a speed of not more than 100 Mbps downloads; and (iv) a speed of not more than 100 Mbps for uploads.

Unserved
For purposes of the CPF DCT Program, an unserved area is defined as a designated geographic area in which households or businesses are without a fixed, terrestrial connection supporting at least 100 Mbps download and 20 Mbps upload speeds, per the FCC National Broadband Map.

Wi-Fi
A family of wireless network protocols based on the IEEE 802.11 family of standards, which are commonly used for local area networking of devices and Internet access, allowing nearby digital devices to exchange data by radio waves.

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Jade Piros de Carvalho, Director of the Office of Broadband Development

[email protected]

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Morgan Barnes, Engagement and Outreach Manager

785-480-8555

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