“Broadband has become a necessity very similar to electricity and water,” said Julie Foote, MVTV Wireless’ Customer Service Agent in Worthington. MVTV Wireless is working in concert with the Nobles Economic Opportunity Network (NEON) to address the lack of broadband through the “ 9 Town Hotspot Network”. Hotspot networks are one of the ways that rural communities are addressing the lack of broadband. Fiber to home installations, though much more expensive, are another approach being demonstrated by Acira (which is powered by the Farmers Mutual Telephone Company and Federated Telephone Cooperative).
The Governor's Task Force on Broadband develops policies to promote the expansion of broadband access throughout Minnesota. The Border-to-Border Broadband Development Grant Program, administered by Jane Leonard, funds the build-out of infrastructure to promote the expansion of broadband service to areas of Minnesota that are unserved or underserved. It is anticipated that the Minnesota State Legislature will provide a greater allocation of grant funds to this program in the upcoming legislative session.
For more information on these and other rural Minnesota broadband initiatives, visit the following sites:
Viewers with story ideas and issues they would like to see discussed on Compass are encouraged to contact Pioneer Public Television via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or to call the station at 1-800-726-3178.
Last week’s Compass program about regional Worksite Wellness programs can be viewed online atwww.pioneer.org/compass.
About Pioneer Public Television
Established in 1966, Pioneer Public TV is an award-winning, viewer-supported television station dedicated to sharing local stories of the region with the world. For more information visit: www.pioneer.org.