USDA Invests Millions in Rural Broadband for NC, OK


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U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey said this week the USDA has invested $23.7 million in high-speed broadband infrastructure for North Carolina and $4.2 million for rural households and farms in Oklahoma. This is one of many funding announcements in the first round of USDA’s ReConnect Pilot Program investments.

Star Telephone Membership Corporation of Clinton, NC, will use ReConnect Program grant funding to deploy a fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) broadband network capable of simultaneous transmission rates of 100 megabits per second (Mbps) or greater. 

The funded service area includes 8,749 households, 19 businesses, 10 educational facilities, and three critical community facilities.  

Oklahoma Western Telephone Company will use the money to deploy a FTTH broadband network capable of simultaneous transmission rates of 100 Mbps or greater. The funded service areas include 312 households and 20 farms. 

“Broadband is pivotal for access to services and information, whether we’re talking about a Main Street business or a family farm. Our mission to increase rural prosperity cannot be achieved without addressing the digital divide our rural communities face because of a lack of high-speed broadband internet connection,” Northey said. 

November 8, 2019

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