Gov Walz visits MN Broadband Grant recipient in Melrose (Stearns County)

St Cloud Times reports on Governor Walz’s visit to Melrose to talk with local businesses about the recently announced broadband grant…

Farm Systems might move away from Melrose if it wasn’t for forthcoming improvements to broadband there, said Farm Systems Associated Vice President Ken Schneider to Gov. Tim Walz on Monday.

Walz came to the Melrose office of internet provider Arvig to highlight the state’s broadband development grant program.

Arvig won a nearly $400,000 grant for the Melrose area project. It will upgrade service at the Melrose industrial park near Interstate Highway 94 and 400-plus locations in the Rice Lake and Brown Lake areas.

Here are some of the economic benefits…

Farm Systems provides equipment for dairies, including robots, said Eric Maynard, senior sales and marketing manager with the company.

The business has 60 robots going in this year, Maynard said. And the company does much of its troubleshooting remotely via broadband.

Chuck Barth, co-owner of Warrior Boats, told the governor Monday that the company held off on expansion because of a lack of broadband. Right now Warrior Boats has to contract out for its social media work.

“This will help us manage our website, our Facebook page, our ads,” Barth said about the planned improvements to broadband in Melrose.

Arvig’s infrastructure will exceed the state’s speed goals for broadband with 1 gigabit per second for downloads and uploads.

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