Every year, the Blandin on Broadband blog does County Broadband Profiles (and will do again when the new maps come out) but given federal opportunities are making it possible to get funding for access and adoption, I thought I’d try to present information for counties to assess their digital equity standing (see table below) and give options for who to contact locally for more information.
Lyon County ranks 28 out of 87 counties for digital equity. A ranking of 28 is not bad at all but diving into the different demographic tracts is most interesting. The access to broadband at speeds of 100 Mbps down and 20 up is 27, which is also not bad and computer ownership (rank 16) and broadband subscription (rank 18) is good. But the ranking for high school degree (60) and population living below poverty (70) is concerning. It might make sense for Lyon County to look at helping use the existing infrastructure to encourage education and workforce training pursuits. Increased skills might help lift up portions of the population.
Scroll down for details and suggested resources for more information.
Blandin Foundation is using the Microsoft Digital Equity Tool to determine needs by county and make high level recommendations for next steps to consider based on the data. (With special thanks to Carter Grupp, Broadband Coordinator Broadband Coordinator at American Connection Project for Otter Tail County.) Visit the tool if you want to look up more statistics on your community.
Demographic Data and Ranking (out of 87)
|Access to 100/20||27|
|No HS degree||60|
|Below 150% poverty (last 12 months)||77|
|Below poverty (last 12 months)||79|
|No broadband access||1|
The map below shows digital inequity by census tract. The bluer the better; yellow and orange colors indicate more inequity. This map can be helpful in figuring out which parts of your county need the most help.
So where do you go to talk to people in the county about digit equity plans? Good places to start include:
- Lakeview School District (ISD #2167)
Superintendent Chris Fenske
- Lynd School District (ISD #415)
Superintendent Dr. Jerry Rasmussen
- Marshall School District (ISD #413)
Superintendent Jeffrey Lund
- Minneota School District (ISD #414)
Superintendent Scott Monson
(507) 872-6175 x1134
- Tracy School District (ISD #2904)
Superintendent Chad Anderson
Regional Development Commission