“From my experience on my family’s farm to my time as Nebraska’s Director of Agriculture, I know first-hand that high-speed broadband internet connectivity is essential to making agricultural businesses more efficient and profitable,” Ibach said. “While serving the state of Nebraska, I saw the potential impact that high-speed broadband would have not only for agricultural producers, but for everyone in our community. It is a privilege to now serve at USDA, under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, and see the Administration make the deployment of this critical infrastructure in rural America a top priority.”
Eastern Nebraska Telephone Company will use a $5.7 million ReConnect Program grant to construct 221 miles of fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) broadband infrastructure. The company will use matching funds of $1.9 million to complete the project, for a total project cost of $7.6 million. Eastern is a certificated local exchange carrier providing broadband service to its eight exchanges in eastern Nebraska. The company, headquartered in Blair, Neb., provides long-distance and wireline voice to all its exchange areas and high-speed broadband service to select areas.