Brownington, MO, Jan 14, 2011 -- (January 14, 2011) BROWNINGTON, Missouri - Janie Dunning, Missouri State Director for USDA Rural Development, visited Brownington in southeast Henry County along Truman Lake for a ribbon cutting ceremony for broadband service in the community center for the local residents.
The broadband service is a result of a relatively new program administered by USDA Rural Development Rural Utilities Service. The program known as Community Oriented Broadband or “Community Connect” provides grants to eligible applicants to establish broadband service in rural communities that are not currently served.
Tony Gilbert, with TurkeyFoot Construction, LLC, dba Lake Communications, learned about the program, submitted an application and was successful in the grant competition resulting in a $471,905 grant.
“We are very pleased to provide the funding assistance to help the rural Brownington community,” said Dunning. “Providing broadband transmission service will help promote economic growth and deliver enhanced educational, health care and public safety services. With investments in broadband, we are fostering innovation and bringing more rural communities into the digital age.”
The Brownington Community Connect grant has three components including: (1) providing broadband access to the approximately 100 community residents with a target date of spring 2011 (2) provide free service to critical community infrastructure (ie. police, fire, rescue and community buildings and (3) provide a community center with a minimum of 10 computers with technical assistance on the computers, applications, training, internet access and monitoring of the computers.
Gilbert indicates that the community center has been operational since early December 2010. They have adjusted the hours to be open which includes Monday – Friday 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Local officials are excited about the center and looking for ways to inform others about the center and the benefits to the residents. Inquiries have been made by the fire department and police department plus the local school to utilize the center for training and other educational purposes.
“Appreciation is extended to our federal elected officials for supporting the USDA Rural Development programs,” Dunning added. “They have been strong proponents for the necessary funding for essential services for rural Missourians.”
Anyone seeking more information about broadband or any other USDA Rural Development programs may visit the homepage at http://www.rurdev.gov/mo or by contacting the Clinton Area Office at 1306 North 2nd Street, Clinton, MO 64735 or by calling (660)885-5567 ext 5.
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