Public Computer Center (PCC) Grant
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act provided the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) $4.7 billion to support the deployment of broadband infrastructure, enhance and expand public computer centers, encourage sustainable adoption of broadband service, and develop and maintain a nationwide public map of broadband service capability and availability. The City of Milwaukee was awarded a $2.4 million Public Computer Center (PCC) grant to aid in the improvement of PCC’s throughout the Milwaukee community. As a result of this award the Connecting Milwaukee Communities Initiative was formed. In recognition of the importance of computer access in public spaces, the City of Milwaukee has chosen to enhance broadband capacity and availability at libraries, public housing sites, and a senior center. The Connecting Milwaukee Communities (CMC) project intends to reach economically vulnerable populations, such as at-risk children, seniors, Spanish speakers, and low-income families by focusing its efforts on areas in the city with higher poverty and unemployment rates. Upgraded centers will provide opportunities for underserved residents to connect with the full benefits of broadband access, including computer training, online education, job skill development, personal money management skills, and access to online health information. The project also plans to install self-serve broadband kiosks in targeted housing projects and provide a one-stop website for users to obtain information about public computer center classes and locations, online courses, and other relevant community information.
The participants in the Connecting Milwaukee Communities (CMC) Initiative are: the City of Milwaukee (Department of Administration, Milwaukee Public Library and the Housing Authority), United Community Center, Inc., Milwaukee Area Workforce Investment Board (MAWIB) and Trinidad Group LLC. Every partner brings a broad spectrum of experience, expertise and creativity to the CMC.