Faribault County Broadband Profile 2020: Red Rating: Ranking out 82 of 87

Rank (from 100/20 megabits per second): 82
Code: Red

Annually, Blandin Foundation pulls together data from the Minnesota Office of Broadband Development and broadband news to gauge progress toward the state broadband goals (25 megabits per second download/3 Mbps upload by 2022 and 100 Mbps/20 Mbps by 2026). Leaders can use this information to improve broadband access and use in their communities. To see how the state is doing overall, or to compare counties, visit the Blandin Foundation interactive map. Or check out past years’ reports: 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.

Faribault County: Needs help

Faribault County will benefit from a Border to Border award announced in the 2019 round, but it is not likely to get them to ubiquitous coverage. They have providers in the area that are engaged but they are still hovering at 40 percent access.

Broadband Access:

2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 40.56 39.2 42.28 49.13
25/3 (2022 goal) 82.1% 71.0% 64.0% 43.5%

Computer Access:

County Households with computer …with desktop or laptop …with a smartphone …with a tablet et al …with other
State of MN 90.3% 81.1% 76.5% 59.3% 3.5%
Faribault 87.6% 79.4% 71.9% 55.3% 3.1%

What we learned in the past:

Faribault County has benefited from MN broadband grants:

  • 2017 – BEVCOMM (Easton Telephone Company) – Delavan SE Rural Project – GRANT $220,350
  • 2015 – BEVCOMM Blue Earth Valley Telephone – Rural Winnebago Fiber-to-the-Premises Project – Grant award: $142,690

An update I received from a provider last year…

Faribault County is mostly served by BEVCOMM and Mediacom. BEVCOMM is a rural ILEC that is not covered by CAF 2 funding, but has recently opted to accept ACAM model support, which will replace rural High Cost USF support.

BEVCOMM is a motivated local provider, making a concerted effort to serve the area’s broadband needs. It has received two Border to Border broadband grants in the last two years in Faribault County, and another 4 grants in other rural areas it serves in Freeborn, Martin and LeSueur counties. The local match for these grants was entirely funded by BEVCOMM, without any local city, township or county funds.

Update from 2020:

Faribault County stands to benefit from a Border to Border grants awarded in the last round:

  • BEVCOMM (Blue Earth Valley Telephone Company & Easton Telephone Company) – Rural Faribault County Project – GRANT: $579,781
    This last mile project will upgrade approximately 112 unserved and six underserved households, 50 unserved farms, and eight unserved businesses in areas of Faribault and Martin Counties. In a funding partnership with the State of Minnesota and Faribault County Economic Development Authority, BEVCOMM will improve broadband service levels up to 1 Gbps download and 1 Gbps upload, exceeding the 2022 and 2026 state speed goals. Sustainable broadband adoption will transform these unserved areas into highly-productive rural communities.
  • Total eligible project cost is $1,449,451
  • Local match is $869,670

BEVCOMM received CARES Act funding from the County for broadband expansion.

We also saw increased broadband use in the form of Neonatal telemedicine.


  • Find more articles on broadband in Faribault County. (http://tinyurl.com/jzwv3gx)
  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 82 (down 5 spaces)
  • Has worked with Blandin: yes
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: no
  • Household density: 8.6
  • Number of providers: 4


I am doing the annual look at broadband in each county – based on maps from the Office of Broadband Development and news gathered from the last year. I’m looking at progress toward the 2022 (25 Mbps down and 3 Mbps up) and 2026 (100 Mbps down and 20 Mbps up) and will code each:

  • Red (yikes)
  • Yellow (warning)
  • Green (good shape)
This entry was posted in MN County Profiles 2020 by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (blandinonbroadband.org), hosts a radio show on MN music (mostlyminnesota.com), supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota (elimstrongtowershelters.org) and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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