Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) announced today that South Dakota Network Communications, a Sioux Falls-based company also known as SDN Communications, will receive over $20 million to increase broadband access to underserved rural areas. Today’s funding is part of the Department of Commerce’s release of $2 billion in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to help expand high-speed Internet access.
In August, Johnson urged the Department of Commerce and the Department of Agriculture to award stimulus funding to South Dakota Network Communications. He stressed the important role the internet can play in business development, affordable and accessible medical care, education, and public safety services.
“This stimulus funding will help communities across South Dakota that currently do not have the infrastructure in place to access quality, high-speed internet services,” Johnson said. “The expansion of high-speed broadband is crucial for us to compete in a global economy, as well as for education and other public safety services.”
Today’s funding will enhance South Dakota Network Communications ability to expand quality broadband to areas that have little or no broadband access. South Dakota Network Communications already delivers its services to 400 hospitals, clinics, schools, universities and government entities.
Johnson is an advocate of legislation ensuring rural telecommunications providers can continue to offer affordable services to rural residents, and has co-sponsored several pieces of legislation to improve telecommunications in South Dakota.
The stimulus package signed by President Obama is focused on tax cuts for the middle class, infrastructure investments and job creation. This funding is a prime example of the kind of resources the legislation provides to help improve communities while advancing South Dakota’s economy.