Located in northwest Iowa, Osage has been an innovative utility leader with forward-looking investments in both telecommunications and clean energy with wind and solar. Osage Municipal Utilites General Manager Josh Byrnes joins us for Community Broadband Bits podcast 232. He is also in the midst of retiring after 3 terms in the Iowa Legislature. Osage built a hybrid fiber coaxial cable network many years ago that they are considering upgrading to being fully fiber-optic following a lot of community support for next-generation connectivity and most importantly, greater reliability. Josh and I also talk generally about the importance of connectivity in rural areas and how the state of Iowa has dealt with the need to improve access. We both agree that Iowa's approach thus far leaves much to be desired and we discuss the challenges that legislatures face in making these decisions. Read the transcript of the show here.We want your feedback and suggestions for the show-please e-mail us or leave a comment below.This show is 32 minutes long and can be played below on this page or via iTunes or via the tool of your choice using this feed.You can download this mp3 file directly from here. Listen to other episodes here or view all episodes in our index.Thanks to Admiral Bob for the music. The song is Turbo Tornado (c) copyright 2016 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: Blue Wave Theory.
When we launched this podcast in 2012, we kicked it off with an interview from Minnesota's farm country, Sibley County. We were excited at their passion for making sure every farm was connected with high quality Internet access.
After the project took a turn and became a brand new cooperative, we interviewed them again in 2014 for episode 99, but they hadn't finished financing. They broke ground 2015 and today we discuss the model and the new Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) case study that details how they built it.
City of Winthrop Economic Development Authority Director Mark Erickson and Renville-area farmer Jake Rieke are both on the board of RS Fiber Cooperative and they join us to explain how their model works.
We at ILSR believe this model could work in much of rural America, in any community that can summon a fraction of the passion of the citizens from Sibley and Renville counties. Having watched this project for all the years it was being developed, I cannot express how impressed I am with their dedication. And because they own it, I'm thrilled to know that no one can take it away from them.
Read the transcript from this show here.
We want your feedback and suggestions for the show – please e-mail us or leave a comment below.
This show is 35 minutes long and can be played below on this page or via iTunes or via the tool of your choice using this feed.
You can download this mp3 file directly from here. Listen to other episodes here or view all episodes in our index.
Thanks to Kathleen Martin for the music, licensed using Creative Commons. The song is “Player vs. Player.”
In the nearly two years since we launched this podcast with an interview from Minnesota's rural Sibley County, the project has evolved significantly but the need for better Internet access remains a constant.
Today, we interview Coop Vice-Chair Cindy Gerholz and Winthrop Town Manager Mark Erickson to get an update on the fiber-to-the-farm project. The Renville-Sibley Fiber project has transitioned from a municipal project to a cooperative. Local towns and a sizeable majority of townships will together issue an economic development bond to provide seed capital to the coop.
We discuss the project, financing arrangements, and the need to make sure that no one is left behind. Stay up to date with the project on their website and Facebook.
Read the transcript from our discussion here.
We want your feedback and suggestions for the show – please e-mail us or leave a comment below. Also, feel free to suggest other guests, topics, or questions you want us to address.
This show is 20 minutes long and can be played below on this page or via iTunes or via the tool of your choice using this feed.
Listen to previous episodes here. You can can download this Mp3 file directly from here.
Find more episodes in our podcast index.
Thanks to Valley Lodge for the music, licensed using Creative Commons. The song is “Sweet Elizabeth.”