December 13, 2018
Contact: Zachary Cikanek
CONNECT AMERICANS NOW APPLAUDS USDA’S RECONNECT PROGRAM
Washington, D.C. – Connect Americans Now Executive Director Richard T. Cullen released the following statement in response to United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue announcing the launch of ReConnect, a program that will offer $600 million in loans and grants for rural broadband infrastructure and development:
“Modern precision agriculture tools allow family farmers to keep up by helping them save time, conserve resources and increase yields. Unfortunately, most of these technological advancements require broadband connectivity – making them unavailable to producers on the wrong side of the digital divide. The ReConnect Program will help reverse this trend by providing crucial resources to local internet service providers, co-ops and other partners working to bring broadband to underserved communities across rural America, and we applaud Secretary Perdue and the USDA’s commitment to this critical issue.
“As the ReConnect Program moves forward, we strongly encourage the USDA to consider how to most efficiently use these funds to bring broadband to the highest number of people for the lowest possible cost. Employing a mixed-technology model that utilizes wired and fixed wireless solutions including TV white spaces technology can drastically reduce the cost of deploying connectivity to rural areas, and the USDA would be wise to ensure these funds are used to support this all-of-the-above approach.”