AMO recommends the following best practices when designing funding programs:
  • Reduce administrative burden by aligning application requirements
  • Provide guidance on how to access any potential or open funding
  • Allow successful applicants to stack provincial and federal dollars (e.g. work with other funding programs) to maximize and leverage investment dollars and outcomes for the benefit of communities, residents and businesses
  • Communities of all sizes should be considered and should not be excluded from funding
  • A flexible approach to funding should include both backbone/transport and last mile (including mobile) as eligible categories
  • Allow applications to include various combinations of project elements (e.g. new builds, resiliency, and redundancy, etc.)
  • The projects should address actual, observed speeds and quality of service (e.g. latency, not just download/upload speeds), rather than relying on theoretical speeds as per the existing hexagonal approach to mapping
  • Allow applicants to provide more detailed geographic data to supplement the hexagonal mapping approach traditionally used
  • Require affordability of proposed projects to be assessed, recognizing that cost to operate is often a key barrier to equal access to broadband and cellular networks