Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

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November 11, 2021 | Tom Ballard

New infrastructure legislation includes many items of interest to those in the tech and innovation space

If you are in the innovation and technology sector, the State Science and Technology Institute reports in this week’s SSTI Digest that there’s a great deal to like in the recently passed “Infrastructure and Investment Jobs Act.”

Technology and innovation highlights from the bill include the following:

  • $65 billion for a variety of broadband deployment initiatives, as well as funding and policies to improve affordability.
  • $150 million for a “Future of Industry” program that features higher education-based centers to support manufacturers’ plans for green improvements, plus $400 million to help implement these projects.
  • Reauthorization for the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) in the Department of Commerce, including support for MBDA Rural Business Centers, robust entrepreneurship education, and existing initiatives.
  • Investments that are intended to increase demand for electric vehicles, including funding for a network of electric vehicle charging stations, electric buses, and electric ferries.
  • Cybersecurity investments in energy and water sectors, and incentives for utilities to make their own cybersecurity investments.
  • A new interagency working group that will study the workforce needs of the telecommunications industry.

SSTI also called readers attention to a summary prepared by the American Institute of Physics that detailed more than $30 billion in new R&D initiatives.

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