Minnesota’s Wish for Broadband: Granted


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State officials in Minnesota said that $20.6 million in grant money has been made available for broadband funding. According to the Grand Forks Herald, the money will be divided among 39 different outreach projects. 

Like other states, Minnesota’s reaction to the pandemic quickly discovered the need for better broadband services. Governor Tim Walz noted the coronavirus situation “has made it crystal clear that fast, reliable broadband access is critical for people living in Greater Minnesota – for everything from education and healthcare to business operations and telecommuting.” 

“The projects we are announcing today will bring high-quality broadband access to under-served and unserved areas of Minnesota, providing fast, reliable internet access for over 6,900 businesses and homes,” stated the executive director of DEED’s Office of Broadband Development, Angie Dickison, during a recent a press call. 

With a diverse population of both urban and rural residents, Minnesota faces the familiar challenge of delivering connectivity to all. Developers like Bill Jensen, Mediacom Group Vice President for Minnesota, noted that while some companies may balk at tackling broadband delivery in remote areas, the promise of broadband activity in a new market could prove to be an attractive opportunity to others. The grant winners were (note, all grant winners will be recipients of matching funds):

  • AcenTek, Rural Peterson Exchange FTTH,  $1,492,096
  • Arvig (Tekstar Communications, Inc.),  $486,458
  • Benton Cooperative Telephone Company,  $338,011
  • BEVCOMM (Blue Earth Valley Telephone,  $1,182,818
  • BEVCOMM (Cannon Valley Telecom, Inc.,  $210,692
  • Charter Communications (Spectrum),  $28,950
  • Charter Communications (Spectrum),  $11,400
  • Charter Communications (Spectrum),  $24,450
  • Consolidated Telephone Company (CTC),  $350,805
  • Crosslake Communications,  $618,970
  • Garden Valley Technologies,  $1,640,722
  • Gardonville Cooperative Telephone,  $1,551,370
  • Gardonville Cooperative Telephone,  $692,929
  • Gardonville Cooperative Telephone,  $90,251
  • Halstad Telephone Company,  $619,000
  • KMTelecom,  $385,173
  • KMTelecom,  $404,709
  • Lismore Cooperative Telephone,  $219,714
  • Mediacom Minnesota LLC,  $624,751
  • Mediacom Minnesota LLC,  $189,752
  • Meeker Cooperative Light & Power,  $41,927
  • MiBroadband, LLC,  $1,173,330
  • Midco (Midcontinent Communications),  $78,824
  • Mille Lacs Energy Cooperative (MLEC),  $198,607
  • Minnesota Valley Telephone,  $226,800
  • Nuvera Communications,  $340,790
  • Nuvera Communications,  $532,232
  • Nuvera Communications,  $169,369
  • Nuvera Communications,  $444,386
  • Nuvera Communications,  $431,260
  • Paul Bunyan Communications,  $311,254
  • Runestone Telecom,  $1,463,259
  • Savage Communications,  $70,261
  • Sytek Communications,  $1,048,668
  • West Central Telephone,  $465,050
  • Wikstrom Telephone,  $490,997
  • Winnebago Cooperative Telecom,  $953,842
  • Winthrop Telephone Company,  $716,000
  • Woodstock Telephone Company,  $325,548

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