By John Eggerton, Multichannel News, 2-12-21

The House Energy & Commerce Committee has voted 31 to 24 to approve a massive COVID-19 relief/budget reconciliation package that includes billions for remote learning broadband service and devices.

The broadband portion of the bill allocates $7.6 billion “to help bridge the digital divide for students and teachers who do not have access to the internet at home,” as E&C Chairman Frank Pallone put it Friday evening following a marathon, two-day markup.

A Republican amendment was defeated 30 to 24 that would not have allowed that broadband money to be spent at schools that were not completely re-opened, saying the remote learning subisidies would be rewarding schools for not opening back up.  » Read More