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Issues

Rural Broadband

Modern broadband communication services have become a virtual necessity, but still are not available to many citizens who live in the rural areas of Missouri. Broadband is a foundation for economic growth, job creation, global competitiveness and a better way of life. In order to make broadband services available, the necessary infrastructure must be in place. Rural electric co-ops are already deploying fiber technologies to better operate their systems, for example in substations controls and security, dispatch, outage response and in providing "smart grid" applications for our members. The leasing to third parties of excess fiber capacity, as well as, the use of existing poles and facilities of co-ops in many cases is the most economically feasible, and rapid way to deploy broadband in rural areas. It also minimizes the impact on landowners.

A federal trial court decision, now on appeal, threatens to halt the cooperative’s efforts to bring broadband to rural Missouri. We are awaiting the court’s ruling.

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