USDA Invests $4.4 Million in Rural Broadband Infrastructure in Georgia County

The solution area includes 2,159 households, 25 pre-subscribed organizations, two community that is critical, an academic facility and 24 pre-subscribed farms, including 22 chicken farms

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural developing Georgia State Director Joyce White announced a $4.4 million investment in high-speed broadband infrastructure. This investment will offer the construction of 90 kilometers of fiber-optic infrastructure in Gilmer County. The solution area includes 2,159 households, 25 pre-subscribed businesses, two critical community facilities, an academic center and 24 pre-subscribed farms, including 22 poultry farms. This broadband investment shall fortify the chicken industry in north Georgia. This will be one of the many funding announcements when you look at the round that is first of ReConnect Pilot system investments.

“We are incredibly proud to partner with Ellijay Telephone business to grow broadband access,” White stated. “Under the leadership of President Trump and Agriculture Secretary Perdue, USDA has made deploying this infrastructure that is critical rural America a premier concern, because we understand whenever rural America flourishes, all of America flourishes.”

The Ellijay Telephone Company (ETC), launched in 1903, is a technology frontrunner in Gilmer, Fannin, Cherokee and Pickens counties in north Georgia. It provides cable tv, phone, safety services and broadband solutions for company, commercial and domestic readers.


In March 2018, Congress supplied $600 million to USDA to grow broadband infrastructure and solutions in rural America. On Dec. 13, 2018, Secretary Perdue announced the principles of this scheduled program, called “ReConnect,” including exactly exactly how the loans and funds is going to be granted to help build broadband infrastructure in rural America. USDA received 146 applications between might 31, 2019, and July 12, 2019, asking for $1.4 billion in money across all three ReConnect Program capital items: 100 % loan, 100 percent grant, and combinations that are loan-grant. USDA is reviewing applications and announcing authorized jobs on a basis that is rolling. Extra assets in every three groups will likely to be produced in the coming days.

These funds, loans and combination funds help the authorities to partner aided by the personal sector and rural communities to construct contemporary broadband infrastructure in areas with inadequate websites. Insufficient service is described as connection rates of lower than 10 megabits per second (Mbps) down load and 1 Mbps upload.

In 2019, Agriculture Secretary Perdue announced USDA will be making available an additional $550 million in ReConnect funding in 2020 december. USDA can certainly make available as much as $200 million for grants, as much as $200 million for 50/50 grant/loan combinations, or more to $200 million for low-interest loans. The application form screen with this round of financing will start Jan. 31, 2020. Applications for many financing items will likely to be accepted when you look at the exact same application screen, that will shut on March 16, 2020.

To aid potential providers along with their applications, USDA is hosting technical support webinars and workshops around the world. To see an updated range of times and areas, or even to register to go to, visit

A description that is full of ReConnect Pilot Program funding can be obtained on web web page 67913 associated with Dec. 12, 2019, Federal enter (PDF, 336 KB). To find out more about eligibility, technical support and current notices, visit

In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to recognize legislative, regulatory and policy modifications that may market farming and success in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue delivered the duty Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 tips to align the authorities with state, regional and tribal governments to make use of possibilities that you can get in rural America. Increasing assets in rural infrastructure is a key suggestion for the task force.