Graves holds Rural Broadband Roundtable
On Tuesday, April 23rd, Congressman Sam Graves (MO-06) held a roundtable at United Electric Cooperative in Savannah, MO, to discuss rural broadband with North Missouri stakeholders.
“I believe that rural broadband is one of the most critical issues facing North Missouri,” said Graves. “High-speed broadband access is the 21st century version of rural electricity. I appreciate the feedback I received and the hard work that is being done on a local and state level to address this critical issue. I’ll continue working to ensure that the federal government is helping, and not hindering, the expansion of broadband service in rural America.”
Stakeholder discussion centered around FCC broadband connectivity mapping issues in North Missouri and its effect on who receives funding. Other major issues identified at the meeting included ensuring that companies who receive federal funding for broadband expansion can provide adequate speeds as promised, as well as what local entities are doing to help in the expansion of rural broadband.
USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue announced last week that applications are now being accepted for the ReConnect Rural Broadband Pilot Program. Congress appropriated $600 million for the grant and low-interest loan program which was double the funding that was previously available for broadband programs. The funds will enable the federal government to partner with the private sector and rural communities to build modern broadband infrastructure in areas with insufficient internet service.