Broadband Development

There is a critical need for broadband availability in Missouri. The Office of Broadband Development is focused on addressing this issue by working with providers, communities, and stakeholders in Missouri to expand and accelerate broadband deployment in five core areas including:

  • Increase broadband data collection and utilization
  • Accelerate broadband infrastructure and access.
  • Leverage partnerships to accelerate broadband efforts.
  • Increase broadband adoption & awareness
  • Promote efficiencies and opportunities in broadband development
     

Strategies achieved in each of these efforts will lead to significant improvement in broadband access across Missouri. Thus, providing enhancements to businesses, agriculture, healthcare, education, and workforce development priorities. For more information or assistance email Tim Arbeiter, Director of Broadband Development at timothy.arbeiter@ded.mo.gov.

Broadband Resources & Quick Links

Missouri Broadband Grant Program - FY20 grant recipients and program description

Missouri Broadband Coverage (pdf maps of most recent FCC dataset, December 2019):​


Missouri ArcGIS broadband resource map - A resource reflecting recent broadband awards and coverage.

University of Missouri System's Missouri Broadband Resource Rail - A website with various resources, maps, and aspects to assist in broadband development

BroadbandUSA's Community Broadband Planning Toolkit - The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) provides this useful tool, as well as a number of broadband resources.

Missouri Broadband Contacts

Recent Broadband Developments

FCC announces winning bidders on Phase I of the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund

On December 7, 2020, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that seventeen broadband entities received $346 million in subsidies over ten years to deploy high speed internet to 199,211 locations in Missouri. The FCC Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) had competitive bidding from 300+ providers nationwide and yielded an allocation of $9.2 billion in support out of the $16 billion set aside by the Commission for Phase I. The FCC has not released when Phase II of the auction will be launched.

FCC RDOF resource links:
See the list of the seventeen providers, click here.
See if your home is included within the expansion awarded areas, click here.
Fact Sheet on the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, click here.


USDA announces five Missouri Broadband Providers will receive $94.5 million in grants and loans to expand high speed internet in Missouri

USDA announces the second round of recipients for the ReConnect program with $94.5 million in grants and loans to five Missouri broadband providers. To find out more information about the ReConnect program, click here.​

The October 2020 announced projects are as follows:

  • Total Highspeed Internet, headquartered in Nixa, was awarded a $24.9 million ReConnect grant and a $24.9 million ReConnect loan. These funds will provide a fiber-to-the-premises network to connect 26,077 people, 720 farms, 417 businesses, nine fire stations and five public schools to high-speed broadband internet in Christian, Greene, Lawrence, Stone and Webster counties.
  • Stoutland Telephone Company, doing business as (DBA) Missouricom and headquartered in Stoutland, will use a $4.6 million ReConnect grant to deploy a fiber-to-the-premises network, which connect 2,390 people, 78 farms and 12 businesses to high-speed broadband internet in Dallas, Camden and Laclede counties.
  • Steelville Telephone Exchange, DBA STE Communications and headquartered in Steelville, will use a $14.8 million ReConnect grant and a $14.8 million ReConnect loan. As a result, STE Communications will deploy a fiber-to-the-premises network to connect 4,756 people, 314 farms, 55 businesses, two fire stations and a post office to high-speed broadband internet in Iron, Dent, Crawford and Washington counties.
  • Marshall Municipal Utilities, headquartered in Marshall, received $1.15 million in grant and loan assistance - 763 households, one educational facility, and one healthcare facility.
  • Big River Broadband, headquartered in Cape Girardeau, will use a $2.9 million grant to deploy a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network to connect 4,839 people, 54 farms, 27 businesses, two public schools and one fire station to high-speed broadband internet in Cape Girardeau County.
     

Six Missouri broadband providers receive $103 million to expand rural broadband from USDA ReConnect Program (January, 2020)

Congratulations to the six Missouri Broadband Providers on receiving support from the USDA ReConnect program. In round one of the ReConnect Pilot Program, the USDA invested a total of $103 million throughout Missouri.

The recipients are as follows:

  • GRM Networks, headquartered in Bethany, received $41 million in grant and loan assistance – connecting 2,288 locations including homes, farms, and businesses.
  • Total Highspeed Internet, headquartered in Nixa, received $40.26 million in grant and loan assistance - 8,683 households, 12 educational facilities, one health care center, and eight critical community facilities.
  • Green Hills Communications, headquartered in Breckenridge, received $2.58 million in grant assistance - 546 households, two educational facilities, and one critical community facility.
  • Gascosage Electric Cooperative, headquartered in Dixon, received $14 million in grant and loan assistance – 1,177 households and two critical community facilities.
  • Mid-States Services, headquartered in Trenton, received $3 million in loan assistance – 566 households, one educational facility, and one critical community facility.
  • Marshall Municipal Utilities, headquartered in Marshall, received $1.15 million in grant and loan assistance - 763 households, one educational facility, and one healthcare facility.


Governor Parson announces recipients of the Coronavirus Relief Fund Emergency Broadband Investment Program (October & August, 2020)

Governor Mike Parson announced 26 broadband projects will awarded up to $3.8 million through two rounds of the state’s Emergency Broadband Investment Program. Almost 2,500 Missouri households will be connected to broadband as a result of these projects.

“Expanding broadband is essential to our state’s infrastructure,” Governor Parson said. “Connecting more Missourians with high-speed internet will allow them to utilize digital platforms for education, health, and business that are so critical during this time.”

In July, six programs were created within the nearly $50 million Rapid Broadband Deployment Initiative which uses the state’s CARES Act funding. To learn more about the six programs, please click here.

The Emergency Broadband Investment Program was designed to reimburse providers that have expanded, or plan to connect, high-speed internet to residents in unserved or underserved areas in the state in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Providers will use funds to assist with construction costs for new broadband expansion to households with citizens on telework, students or vulnerable populations. 

To view the list of recipients, click here.

To learn more about the Emergency Broadband Investment Program, click here.
 

Governor Parson announces recipients of the Missouri Broadband Grant Program (April, 2020)

Governor Mike Parson announced 16 broadband development projects will receive a total of $3.05 million through the state of Missouri’s broadband grant program. The selected projects will bring service to more than 4,400 Missouri homes, businesses, and farms that lack access to high-speed internet.

“Broadband brings so many new opportunities for rural economies,” Governor Parson said. “From farming and business to education and health care, high speed internet is essential infrastructure in the modern economy, especially during these challenging times.”

“It is crucial that Missourians have an opportunity to get connected,” Department of Economic Development Director Rob Dixon said. “During a time in which many citizens have been instructed to stay home, reliable internet access is critical to meet needs for education, telemedicine, telecommuting, and overall quality of life.”

”The COVID-19 outbreak has emphasized the importance of strong connectivity for our families, businesses and communities, especially in rural Missouri,” Missouri Department of Agriculture Chris Chinn said. “The demand on our digital infrastructure is unprecedented right now. We need every last mile connected to high-speed internet – all the way to the farm gate – for our rural students, workforce and entrepreneurs.”

For more information about the broadband grant program and to view the detailed list of recipients, click here.


USDA opens second round of ReConnect Program

Secretary Perdue launched the second round of the USDA’s ReConnect program making another $500 million available to organizations interested in expanding broadband in rural America. The application cycle opened on January 31, 2020, and will close on March 16, 2020. To find out more information about the ReConnect program, click here.​

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