Todd County Broadband Profile 2020: Red rating: Ranking out 79 of 87

Green=served Purple=underesrved Red=unserved

Rank (from 100/20 megabits per second): 79
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.

Todd County: on bottom 10 list for broadband

Working with the Blandin Foundation, Todd County has been focused on better broadband for a long time. They have benefited from MN Border to Border grants; and they will benefit again on a project that received funding in the last grant round. But Todd County needs help.

They are hovering at 50 percent for access to 100/20 Mbps and 25/3 Mbps. That means half of the county is unserved. Residents must feel the lack of access. In May 2019, CTC announced plans to build out to Todd County, which is likely the cause of the increase in access to 100/20 Mbps. Hopefully the build out is continuing. That would be a real boon to Todd County.

Broadband Access:

2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 49.12 38.68 17.58 2.86
25/3 (2022 goal) 53.73 71.91 67.96 46.01

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%
Todd 80.1% 69.6% 61.6% 43.9% 2.6%

What we learned in the past:

Working with the Blandin Foundation, Todd County has been focused on better broadband for a long time. In May 2019, CTC announced plans to build out to Todd County.

Todd County has benefited from a MN broadband grant:

  • 2017 – WCTA (West Central Telephone Association) – Northern Todd County – GRANT $902,695
  • 2014 – Arvig (Mainstreet Communications LLC), Sauk Lake area $

Update from 2020:

Todd County will benefit from a project that received MN Border to Border funding in the last round:

  • 2019: WCTA (West Central Telephone Association) – Rural Staples Phase I Project – GRANT $555,355
    This last mile project will serve 69 unserved households and 40 unserved businesses, farms, and community anchor institutions in areas of Staples and Villard townships in Todd County; areas of Thomastown township in Wadena County; and areas of Becker township in Cass County. In a funding partnership with the State of Minnesota, Sourcewell, and Region 5, WCTA will improve broadband service levels up to 1 Gbps download and 1 Gbps upload, exceeding the 2022 and 2026 state speed goals. Broadband access will allow farmers and ranchers to follow markets, talk with customers and reach new markets, and use the latest precision agriculture tools to enhance their operations. The broadband network will improve access to health care, specifically mental health and senior care through e-visits and tele-health applications. Broadband will also help business owners manage remotely and could stimulate the local economy.
  • Total eligible cost is $1,234,123
  • Local match is $678,768


  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 79 (no change)
  • Has worked with Blandin: yes
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: yes
  • Household density: 10


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 (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

2 thoughts on “Todd County Broadband Profile 2020: Red rating: Ranking out 79 of 87

  1. What a magnificent, informative and very telling piece of work. I can only speak for Todd County but if we don’t make a concentrated effort to be a part of the 21st century, we’ll quyickly be in a race for #87. Alex Weego

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