American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) LogoThe National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and Rural Utilities Service (RUS) have made a searchable database of Broadband Initiatives Program (BIP) and Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) applications available online. The database is meant to give the public an opportunity to research projects that affect them directly. Unfortunately, although the database is searchable, there is currently no way to pinpoint what area is impacted by a particular application. The search form allows users to search the database by state, but that state is the one the applicant is headquartered in. Naturally, with regional and national companies involved, there is no guarantee that the location of the applicant's headquarters is the same as the location of the proposed project. Finally, it is worth noting that the database only includes electronic applications. Paper applications are not included at this time.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 appropriated $7.2 billion to “expand broadband access to unserved and underserved communities across the U.S., increase jobs, spur investments in technology and infrastructure, and provide long-term economic benefits.” The funds are being administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and the Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).