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USDA's ReConnect Program Boosts Rural Iowa Internet Access

USDA's ReConnect Program Boosts Rural Iowa Internet Access

By Andi Anderson

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is working to improve internet access in rural Iowa. With $700 million available through the ReConnect Program, efforts are underway to make high-speed internet more accessible in underserved areas.

Theresa Greenfield, Rural Development State Director, stresses the importance of this initiative for small businesses, farmers, students, and healthcare services across Iowa. By partnering with telecommunications companies, cooperatives, and tribes, the USDA aims to make reliable high-speed internet a reality for millions.

In the fifth round of the ReConnect Program, USDA has made improvements to simplify the application process and prioritize areas with the greatest need. Applicants proposing to serve regions with many underserved locations will receive priority. Additionally, organizations meeting strict financial criteria will have simpler application requirements.

To qualify for funding, proposed service areas must show a significant lack of high-speed internet access, with at least 90% of households underserved. Defined as fixed, terrestrial speeds of 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload, this benchmark ensures substantial improvements in connectivity for rural residents and businesses.

Past recipients in Iowa have already seen the benefits of ReConnect funding, with companies like Prairieburg Telephone Company and Kalona Cooperative Telephone Company expanding their broadband services.

Applications for the fifth round of funding must be submitted online by May 21, 2024. For detailed program information and application requirements, visit

The USDA remains committed to empowering rural communities with accessible, affordable, and reliable high-speed internet. Apply now to be part of this transformative initiative.

Photo Credit: pexels-fauxels

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Categories: Iowa, Rural Lifestyle

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