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USDA Rural Development State Director Visits South Slope

September 16, 2022

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director in Iowa Theresa Greenfield visited South Slope Cooperative Communications in North Liberty today to promote USDA’s recent announcement of $1 billion in funding available for high-speed internet in Round 4 of its ReConnect program.

South Slope Cooperative Communications received $5.4 million in ReConnect funding in 2020 to bring high-speed internet to rural communities in eastern Iowa. The business is using a $2.7 million ReConnect grant and a $2.7 million ReConnect loan awarded in August 2020 to deploy a fiber-to-the-premises network to connect 1,984 people, 147 farms and 26 businesses to high-speed broadband internet in Iowa and Johnson counties.

Director Greenfield met with company leadership to promote the ReConnect Round 4 program. The ReConnect Round 4 application window is now open and will close on November 2, 2022.

“It’s been the summer of high-speed internet at USDA, with advances in connectivity for households and businesses all across Iowa,” said Director Greenfield. “The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to investing in rural infrastructure and high speed internet. USDA-funded projects such as this one for high-speed internet act as a catalyst for economic development and support precision agriculture and distance learning for rural areas.”

The ReConnect Loan and Grant Program furnishes loans and grants to provide funds for the costs of construction, improvement, or acquisition of facilities and equipment needed to provide broadband service in eligible rural areas.

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