Broadband Fund
You asked us! Questions and answers about the Broadband Fund

Following the launch of the first call for applications on 3 June, 2019, we have responded to questions from Canadians and potential applicants. The following provides a summary of common questions and the answers that have been provided.

Applicant Questions

How often will you update the Broadband Fund eligibility maps?

We’ll publish eligibility maps to illustrate the geographic areas that are eligible for funding as described in each call for applications. Every effort will be made to ensure that the latest available data is reflected in the maps.

With regards to satellite projects, does access infrastructure include mobile wireless, as well as fixed access infrastructure?

Yes, for satellite projects an applicant can propose a mobile wireless infrastructure solution to improve broadband Internet access service in a satellite-dependent community. Applicants will be required to meet the criteria for a satellite project when proposing a mobile wireless infrastructure solution for access infrastructure.

Section 6.1.3 of Project-Specific Eligibility Criteria in the Application Guide provides more details on the criteria for satellite projects.

What experience is required for an applicant to be eligible for funding from the Broadband Fund?

The applicant – or at least one member of a partnership, joint venture, or consortium – must have at least three years of experience in deploying and three years of experience in operating broadband infrastructure in Canada, and must be eligible to operate as a Canadian carrier. Should the applicant – or the members of a partnership, joint venture, or consortium – not meet the experience requirement, the group applicant must enter into a contractual arrangement with an entity that does. Section 4 of Single Entity Applicant Details and Group Entity Applicant Details in the Instruction Manual provides more details on the kind of proof is required to assess the experience criteria.

Note: Individuals, as well as federal government departments, agencies, boards, commissions, Crown corporations and special operating agencies are ineligible for funding from the Broadband Fund either as applicants, or as members of an applicant partnership, joint venture, or consortium. The number of years of experience of an individual staff member who is a part of an applicant partnership, joint venture or consortium, does not qualify as applicant experience.

In a partnership, joint venture or consortium between a non-Canadian and a Canadian company, does it matter which of the two has three years of experience in deploying and operating broadband infrastructure?

In a partnership, joint venture or consortium between a Canadian and a non-Canadian entity, the Canadian entity must have three years of experience in deploying and three years of experience in operating broadband infrastructure in Canada.

What kind of proof does an applicant need to provide to show that they have a minimum of three years of experience deploying and operating broadband infrastructure in Canada?

The applicant will need to describe its experience in a few sentences, including information on where and how long it has been deploying and operating broadband services, and the number of customers currently served. Section 4 of Single Entity Applicant Details and Group Entity Applicant Details in the Instruction Manual provides more details on the kind of proof required to assess the experience criteria.

What is a MAD number and what is the purpose of providing it?

A MAD number is the “Master Address Database” number used as the identifier in the CRTC’s data collection system (DCS). All telecommunications service providers in Canada must fill out data forms and submit them to the DCS system annually. The Broadband Fund’s Application Form has a field where service providers can (optionally) provide their MAD Number. Providing a MAD Number allows some of the information the applicant has already submitted in the DCS system to be used to automatically fill in the Application Form – such as legal status, carrier status and financial information.

Note: If the applicant does not have a MAD number, or does not want the CRTC to use the information in the DCS system for the purposes of their application, the applicant must submit this information as part of their Broadband Fund Application.

How do I find my MAD number?

The MAD number is the number found under the Entity ID field in the DCS system. To find the Entity ID for your company follow the instructions below. Upcoming updates to the Broadband Fund Application Form will modify the field name from “MAD” to “MAD/Entity ID”.

To find your MAD/Entity ID:

  • Log on to the CRTC’s data collection system (DCS).
  • Open any form that appears under Application Form in DCS.
  • At the top you will find the form’s title and number under which you will find your company’s name (called an Entity Name).
  • Next to the Entity Name is your Entity ID – this is your MAD number that you can use to enter in the “MAD/Entity ID” field in the Broadband Fund Application Form.

Where are the forms to submit company information (e.g. pro forma financial statements and cash flows) located?

The Broadband Fund requires applicants to fill out their company information using the forms supplied in the Application Workbook. To access the Application Workbook you must log into your “My CRTC” Account and start a new application. Once in the application, you can download and/or follow the links to all important resources from the collapsible information box at the top of the page.

Why is the hexagon information for Satellite Dependent Communities (SDCs) not displayed outside of Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut?

In CRTC 2019-191, Broadband Fund - Call for applications, the Commission determined that for the first call for applications for funding, it would accept all types of eligible projects in (i) SDCs in any area of Canada, or (ii) any eligible geographic areas in the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, or Yukon. The Commission also intends to launch a second call for applications in fall 2019 that will be open to all types of eligible projects in all eligible geographic areas throughout Canada along with an updated map.

As such, applicants who wish to propose projects to build or upgrade fixed access infrastructure, transport infrastructure, mobile wireless infrastructure, or any combination of these in SDCs outside of the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, or Yukon will be able to apply for funding for these projects as part of the second call for applications.

Still Have Questions?

If you have any additional questions related to the Broadband Fund, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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