Gascosage Electric Coop will be receiving a 7-million dollar loan and a 7-million dollar grant to develop a Fiber-to-the-Premises broadband network for its most rural areas. The investment is expected to reach 20 pre-subscribed farms, 20 pre-subscribed businesses, 1,177 households, and two fire protection districts.
The U-S-D-A loan and grant were announced Tuesday by Missouri U.S. Senator Roy Blunt, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, who said Missouri will receive 60.9-million dollars through the Re-Connect Pilot Program to expand rural broadband. The Blunt-backed FY2018 government funding bill included $600 million for the program, which targets areas that currently lack access to broadband and includes provisions that prevent overbuilding existing infrastructure.
Senator Blunt said, “The investment marks another important step toward ending the digital divide that has left about one-third of rural Missourians without access to broadband. I’ll continue working with local, state, and federal officials to ensure every community has access to high speed internet.”