The community benefits agreement was first proposed by Minneapolis Digital Inclusion Coalition--a loose group formed by the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability (using funding from the Minneapolis Foundation. In response to this group, the City of Minneapolis formed a Digital Inclusion Task Force that recommended specific items for the Community Benefits Agreements. To many people's surprise, the Mayor and City Council agreed to a Community Beneifts Agreement and made it a part of the contract.
From the City of Minneapolis website, the major provision of the CBA are:
- USI Wireless will provide $500,000 to create a “digital inclusion fund” that will be used to promote affordable Internet access, low-cost hardware, local content and training. In addition, US Internet will direct a minimum of five percent of the network’s net profits to a digital inclusion fund for ongoing digital inclusion efforts. In total, it is expected that about $11 million will go into the digital inclusion fund over the 10-year term of the contract.
- Free limited-time service will be available in some public locations, such as parks and plazas in Minneapolis.
- A free “walled garden” level of wireless service – Minneapolis Civic Garden – is now available to people throughout the city for important neighborhood, government, and community services information.
- Designated community technology centers will receive free wireless access.