I wrote about the USDA Reconnect awards last week, this week I have more info from the Fillmore County Journal on the award in Harmony…
Harmony Telephone Company will use a $2.7 million ReConnect Program loan and a $2.7 million ReConnect Program grant to construct a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network to connect 577 households, a health care center and a critical community facility spread over 143 square miles in several counties bordering southern Minnesota and northern Iowa.
“The award will help us build out our fiber infrastructure to rural areas, which will create endless life-changing opportunities for our subscribers,” said Harmony Telephone Company COO Jill Huffman.
Being able to build out fiber infrastructure to rural areas creates opportunities that had been only available to city subscribers.
Huffman gave a few examples of capabilities broadband brings for farmers, small business owners and rural residents in general.
“It can provide added security with real-time video monitoring of property and evaluate equipment performance off-site for farmers,” Huffman explained.
With more at-home businesses, Huffman spoke of broadband being able to level the playing field with their competitors by improving the ways they can connect with business partners, customers and suppliers. It allows telecommuting opportunities for rural residents and children to connect at similar internet speeds as their city classmates.