The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently announced that it has awarded more than $143 million to 11 broadband providers to bring broadband to rural Iowa.
The funding is part of the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, a $20.4 billion federal initiative to bring broadband service to rural areas with nonexistent or insufficient internet access
Nearly all rural locations eligible for the award will receive broadband at speeds of 100 Megabits per second (Mbps) download, with nearly 85% of eligible locations receiving Gigabit service according to the FCC.
“Access to high-speed internet access is an essential part of everyday life. The FCC’s Rural Digital Opportunity Fund builds on the efforts we have underway through my empower rural Iowa initiative as well as significant funds we have allocated through the CARES Act,” said Gov. Reynolds in a release.
The Rural Digital Opportunity Fund is just the latest project working to bring broadband to all of Iowa. Earlier this year $50 million dollars in CARES Act funds were made available by Governor Kim Reynolds for broadband grant projects throughout the state. This is in addition to the ongoing Empower Rural Iowa broadband grants that provides matching grants up to 35% for broadband infrastructure and development.
The CARES Act and Empower Rural Iowa grants are administered by the Office of the Chief Information Officer through authority granted by the Iowa State Legislature. The Rural Digital Opportunity Fund is administered by the FCC.
The following Iowa providers will receive funds under the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund.
|Provider||Amount of funding|
|AMG Technology Investment Group||$112,637,885.70|
|Corn Belt Telephone||$42,237.00|
|Farmers Mutual Cooperative Telephone Company||$12,447.00|
|LTD Broadband LLC||$23,184,786.30|
|Miles Communications LLC||$316,641.00|
|NRTC Phase I RDOF Consortium||$356,440.10|
|Windstream Services LLC||$5,355,920.50|
|Winnebago Cooperative Telecom||$84,096.10|
|Wisper-CABO 904 Consortium||$8,586.00|
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Iowa internet provider Xtreamair acquired by NextLink -Sept. 8, 2020