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Posts tagged: Broadband

In Charles City Iowa, USDA Officials Listen to Advice from Business Leaders at White House Roundtable Event

Access to capital, cutting edge technology and more responsive government programs will help drive rural innovation, according to participants at a White House Business Council roundtable in Charles City, Iowa yesterday. Facilitated by USDA Rural Utilities Service (RUS) Administrator Jonathan Adelstein, the forum drew a group of rural business leaders from around the region. They raised issues ranging from the length of time it takes to process passport and visa applications to new regulations on banks and financial institutions.

Adelstein, who is one of the Obama Administration’s leading advocates for rural broadband, heard an extensive discussion of the shortcomings of rural broadband in Charles City. At the same time, rural telephone cooperatives described their success working with RUS to improve their systems. Charles City Mayor Jim Erb told Adelstein there exists a “rural-rural” divide in which some communities receive exceptional broadband service while others do not. Adelstein said the Obama Administration is working to extend high speed broadband throughout rural America and that USDA programs may be able to help. The probability that economic development and job creation in rural areas will be driven by access to high speed broadband was stressed. Read more »

Rural America: Building Upon a Record of Success

Cross posted from the White House blog:

This morning, President Obama signed an Executive Order establishing a White House Rural Council, the first entity of its kind established to focus on policy initiatives for Rural Americans.  The President’s signature on this document represents a truly historic moment for the nation.  I am honored to serve as the Chair of the Council and work directly with my Cabinet colleagues from across the federal government to improve the economic conditions and quality of life for millions of Rural Americans.

President Obama has already established an impressive record in rural areas, which the Rural Council will build on.  The Administration’s record includes substantial investments in rural America to modernize our Nation’s infrastructure, provide broadband access to 10 million Americans, enhance energy independence, expand educational opportunities, and provide affordable health care.  Nevertheless, the President believes that even more needs to be done in order to fully capitalize on the emerging opportunities in Rural America.  Despite recent advances, rural communities continue to struggle to maintain the population and businesses needed for sustained economic growth. Read more »

Residents of Eight Minnesota Counties to Receive State-of-the-Art Broadband, Jobs, Thanks to USDA and the Recovery Act

April marked an important month for northeastern Minnesotans. Ground was broken to mark the beginning of a three-year project to supply high-speed broadband access across eight counties and surrounding of the Arrowhead region of Minnesota. The project was funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in conjunction with USDA Rural Development. The Northeast Service Cooperative (NESC) in Mt. Iron, Minn. will oversee the project.

Senator Al Franken attended the groundbreaking and told the gathered media that creating rural broadband opportunities was a big part of the Recovery Act. Read more »

USDA Administrator Visits the “Show Me State” to Review Business, Telecom and Broadband Investments

Anita J. (Janie) Dunning, Missouri State Director, and Jonathan Adelstein, RUS Administrator (center), painting the Ralls County PWSD No. 1 water tower

Anita J. (Janie) Dunning, Missouri State Director, and Jonathan Adelstein, RUS Administrator (center), painting the Ralls County PWSD No. 1 water tower

A three day visit to Missouri, the “Show Me State” allowed me to join Janie Dunning, Rural Development State Director, to see how rural areas benefiting from infrastructure investments made possible through USDA Rural Development programs and American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) financing. Read more »

NESC Breaks Ground on Recovery Act Broadband Project

Wednesday, April, 20, 2011 marked an important day for northeastern Minnesotans. Ground was broken to mark the beginning of a three-year project to supply high-speed broadband access across eight counties and surrounding of the Arrowhead region of Minnesota. The project was funded with $43.5 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in conjunction with USDA Rural Development. The Northeast Service Cooperative (NESC) in Mt. Iron, Minn. will oversee the project.

Senator Al Franken attended the groundbreaking and told the gathered media that creating rural broadband opportunities was a big part of the Recovery Act. Read more »

USDA Utilities Administrator Announces Broadband Funding for Rural Residents

USDA Rural Development Rural Utilities Service Administrator Jonathan Adelstein and the Rural Development Broadband Division Staff welcomed over 200 people to the National Broadband Workshop on April 20 – 21, 2011 in Downtown Denver.

While rural communities face unique challenges in creating and sustaining good jobs, they are also presented with unprecedented opportunities for economic growth.  Increasing their access to broadband is one way in which Rural Development can assist communities on this journey.  Providing broadband service to our rural communities is a vital platform for job creation and a springboard for economic development for years to come.  Workshop sessions held focused on a variety of topics including financial analysis and business plan preparation. Read more »