COLO, IOWA — On Tuesday evening in her Condition of the State speech, Governor Kim Reynolds committed to spending $450 million to bring faster internet speeds to more rural homes.
Governor Reynolds says a third of Iowa counties are ‘broadband deserts’ where high speed internet either isn’t offered or is too expensive for most customers to afford. The problem is the lack of infrastructure to bring high speed data to rural areas. Connecting homes and business in urban areas is much easier where homes are seperated by yards, not miles.
The town of Colo in Story County is one rural area that has been able to avoid becoming a desert. There are 530 homes in town all hooked up to fiber optic broadband. However there are neighboring communities that aren’t as lucky. The Iowa Communcations Alliance hopes the Governor’s plans can help them. President Levi Bappe tells WHO 13 “even with all of the build outs … there are plenty of rural customers who cannot get adequate and reliable Internet. So there is plenty of work to be done and we are excited about the opportunities that the Governor is proposing.”