Rural residents around Winthrop and Quasqueton will soon have access to faster broadband internet.
East Buchanan Telephone Cooperative was recently awarded a two-point-three million dollar CARES Act grant to deploy over 84 miles of fiber optic to rural cooperative members in those service areas of Buchanan County.
General Manager Mike Becker:
East Buchanan Telephone Cooperative was organized in 1964 and serves the Iowa exchanges of Aurora-Stanley, Winthrop and Quasqueton with phone, internet and video services. The Cooperative has nine board members, with three elected by the cooperative membership each year in December – one board member in their three service areas.
Right now, most of their cooperative members have less than 10 megabits per second speed available to them, but with fiber optics, people living in the areas covered by the grant will be able to get much faster access than the required minimum speeds of 100 megabits download speeds and 20 megabits upload speeds.
Becker says the grant requires that the project be completed by July 1st of next year – a very short period of time for the amount of geographic area they’re covering – so crews have already gotten to work.
Access to faster internet will be a big benefit to rural cooperative members in these Winthrop and Quasqueton service areas – especially during times like these.
This fiber optic grant project caught the attention of Lt. Governor Adam Gregg, who came to Winthrop on Tuesday afternoon to visit East Buchanan Telephone Cooperative as part of his 99 County Tour.
Becker says he appreciate the Lt. Governor taking the time to visit.
East Buchanan Telephone Cooperative’s plans are to have buried fiber cable to each and every cooperative member by the end of next year – and this grant is going a long way to make that happen.
photos courtesy of East Buchanan Telephone Coop, Lt. Governor’s Office and Janelle Tucker, KMCH