Success Story
Release No.STELPRD4021038
BACA VALLEY TELEPHONE COMPANY BRINGS BROADBAND TO RURAL NEW MEXICO
, Jun 24, 2013 --

Need:

Incorporated in 1974, Baca Valley Telephone Company (BVT) received its first loan from USDA’s Rural Utilities Service (RUS) in 1979. This loan funded the construction of a new headquarters facility, burying hundreds of miles of cable and installing two new switches in Des Moines and Maxwell. BVT has received several Infrastructure Loans from RUS over time, totaling over $4.5 million.

BVT wanted to extend a fiber optic network in the rural northeastern part of New Mexico. The company wants to meet the need for present and future bandwidth requirements by placing fiber to nodes in close proximity of the rural subscribers. The funded fiber build-out will replaces an old and deteriorating copper plant and low bandwidth microwave transport in some areas and provides new connectivity in others. With an expected life of 30 years, this fiber will provide a solid framework for providing the bandwidth needs of the future.

How Rural Development Helped:

In 2010, BVT received a Broadband Initiatives Program (BIP) loan/grant combination from RUS. The grant was for $1,586,000 and the loan was for $1,651,000. The award funded fiber optic connectivity to a number of new cabinets and existing

buildings. In addition, they deployed a last mile access system intended to provide broadband services to households and businesses in the northeast area of New Mexico

Results:

Today, BVT has a service area covering more than 2,600 square miles. In addition to residential service in the Des Moines and Maxwell exchanges, they provide cellular service, local Internet access, business telephone systems, security systems, and network cabling throughout northeastern New Mexico and southeastern Colorado. All construction on the project funded through BIP has been completed and their new broadband service is in place.

The Des Moines and Maxwell Schools are also enjoying the improved broadband service, as are the two Rural Health Care Facilities, located at the schools.  One of the goals of this project was to improve overall service to the most remote ranches and farms. These new services also allow for more children to return home and work on the family farms, ranches, and businesses. The addition of new Central Office broadband equipment is giving BVT the ability to expand services beyond the initial installation.  This summer, they plan to install new fiber optic cable and broadband equipment at a Federal Wildlife Refuge near Maxwell, New Mexico. The expanded fiber facilities are also able to greatly improve bandwidth to many of BVT’s existing remote cabinets and in fact replaced several of them with newer, more modern equipment. 

For more information on the Telecom Program or any of its success stories, contact Jessica Mailander at 202-720-0698 or Jessica.mailander@wdc.usda.gov

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