Rice County Broadband Profile 2021: Yellow rating: Ranking out 33 of 87

Rank: 33
Code: Yellow
(See Blandin Foundation interactive map)

Rice County: Ongoing conversation may open doors 

Rice County has a great leap of broadband in 2019. The last couple years have been stagnant but they have been in conversations with providers and those providers have gotten state grants in the last round.

Rice County will benefit from a few MN State Grants awarded in 2021:

  • Nuvera Communications, Inc. – Webster Rural FTTP – GRANT $431,260 This last mile project will serve 103 unserved and 178 underserved locations in Wheatland and Webster townships in Rice County, Euraka and Greenvale townships in Dakota County, and New Market and Cedar Lake townships in Scott County.
  • BEVCOMM (Cannon Valley Telecom, Inc.) – Rural Morristown Fiber Expansion Project – GRANT $210,692 This last mile project will serve approximately 14 unserved and 94 underserved locations in portions of Rice, Waseca, and Steele counties.

Projected allocation of American Recovery Project ARP funds in Rice is $12,988,807; broadband is one possible use.

Rice County has the opportunity to invest in broadband with federal funding. That would help them reach ubiquitous broadband. They have engaged providers who might be happy to make good use of the funds. They are code yellow.

Broadband Access:

2021 2020 2019 2018 2017
100/20 (2026 goal) 85.58 82.95 82.43 32.63 48.85
25/3 (2022 goal) 94.18 93.75 92.46 93.2 97.93

Computer Access:

County Households with computer …with desktop or laptop …with ONLY  smartphone …with a tablet et al
State of MN 93.6% 80.6% 7.7% 63.8%
Rice 89 77.4 6.4 59.7

Past grants:



  • Find more articles on broadband in Rice County (http://tinyurl.com/jg6q8gs)
  • 100/20 Mbps ranking: 33 (down 2)
  • Has worked with Blandin: no
  • Has received a MN Broadband grant: no
  • Household density: 51.21


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, MN County Profiles 2021 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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