Rank (from 100/20 megabits per second): 64
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.
Otter Tail County: recent progress but needs more
Otter Tail County is seeing steady, incremental improvement to their broadband access, likely because they have also benefited from a number of MN Border to Border grants. And they are in line to benefit from grants in the last round too. They have a long way to go to meet the 2026 goal, but they keep moving forward.
|100/20 (2026 goal)||65.55||35.34||2.36||1.75|
|25/3 (2022 goal)||75.02||92.93||89.56||59.34|
|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%|
What we learned in the past:
Otter Tail has benefited from several MN broadband grants:
- 2017 – Arvig – Pelican Rapids rural non-ACAM – GRANT $633,642
- 2017 – Otter Tail Telcom LLC – Red Oak Drive – GRANT $173,683
- 2017 – WCTA (West Central Telephone Association) – Wadena Rural Phase III – GRANT $874,581
- 2016 – OTTER TAIL TELCOM BATTLE LAKE – GRANT: $ 238,170
- 2016 – OTTER TAIL TELCOM FERGUS FALLS AREA – GRANT: $ 279,271
- 2016 – WCTA WADENA RURAL NORTH — GRANT: $718,850
- 2015 – Otter Tail Telcom Fergus Falls 864 – Hwy 59 – Grant award: $295,432
- 2015 – Otter Tail Telcom Hwy 59/94 PRT to POM – Grant award: $164,207
- 2014 – Otter Tail Telcom, Stuart Lake – Award: $105,364.
- 2014 – Otter Tail Telcom, 245th – Award: $108,553.
Update from 2020:
Otter Tail will see improvement with two Border to Border projects awarded in the last round:
2019: Otter Tail Telcom LLC – Long and Fish Lakes Project – GRANT $156,954
This last mile project will serve 70 unserved households and 18 unserved businesses, telecommuters, and farms in the Elizabeth Township area of Otter Tail County. In a funding partnership with the State of Minnesota and Otter Tail County, Otter Tail Telcom will improve broadband service levels up to 100 Mbps download and 20 Mbps upload, meeting Minnesota’s 2026 state speed goal. Building a fiber-to-the-premise network that provides advanced, high-speed broadband services to households, businesses and farms in the proposed grant area improves access to critical school e-learning applications while also making agricultural operations more efficient and enhancing crop production through enabled precision agriculture tools. The broadband network will improve access to rural health care resources, will stimulate a more robust local area economy and improve public safety through IPAWS.
- Total eligible cost is $448,440
- Local match is $291,486
- 2019: Arvig (Loretel Systems, Inc.) – Cormorant Lakes Area Project – GRANT $430,780
This middle and last mile project will upgrade approximately 481 unserved locations near Pelican Lake, Lake Ida, Turtle Lake, and Big Cormorant Lake in Otter Tail, Becker, and Clay Counties. In a funding partnership with the State of Minnesota and Otter Tail County, Arvig will improve broadband service levels up to 1 Gbps download and 1 Gbps upload, exceeding the 2022 and 2026 state speed goals. These investments will improve quality of life and business development opportunities.
- Total eligible project cost is $1,230,800
- Local match is $800,020
- Find more articles on Pennington County https://blandinonbroadband.org/?s=pennington&submit=Search
- 100/20 Mbps ranking: 10 (up 1)
- Has worked with Blandin: yes
- Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
- Household density: 9.4
- Districts: CD 7
House: 01A, 01B
- Find your reps
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)