By Kim Hart - 02/09/10 09:24 PM EST
It also directs the FCC to implement three pilot programs:
--The first pilot program narrows the digital divide through the distribution of vouchers to enable low-income students to purchase residential broadband service.
--The second utilizes a competitive grant program to extend funding for broadband equipment and services to selected community colleges and head start facilities that best demonstrate need and incorporation of broadband use in their educational mission.
--The third enables certain E-Rate applicants serving particularly low-income students to apply for significantly discounted services and technologies for the use of e-books.
Reps. Lois Capps (D-Calif.) and Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) co-sponsored the legislation.
The FCC is also evaluating E-Rate programs in its national broadband plan.