Kandiyohi County encourages residents with inadequate broadband to apply for Minnesota line extension program

Any resident or business in the state of Minnesota that does not have wired broadband internet service of at least 25 megabits per second downloading speed and 3 megabits per second for uploads is now eligible to apply for this program.

Broadband graphic

WILLMAR — The Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission Broadband Committee remains committed to working with internet providers to complete broadband construction projects in Kandiyohi County so that all premises have access to high-speed internet, according to a news release from the EDC.

The state's Broadband Line Extension Connection Program is a great opportunity for businesses and residents outside of the recent Border-to-Border Broadband Development project award areas that do not have adequate broadband service, the EDC said in the release, specifically Arctander, Mamre, St. Johns townships and portions of Dovre and Lake Andrew townships.

Any resident or business in the state of Minnesota that does not have wired broadband internet service of at least 25 megabits per second download speed and 3 megabits per second for uploads is now eligible to apply for this program.

A survey will help Renville County explore different broadband solutions for unserved and underserved areas in the county.
Willmar City Council authorized staff to move forward with drafting a contract with Hometown Fiber to build out a $19.3 million open-access fiber network with a speed of up to 10 gigabytes per second.
With the help of state and federal funds, homes and businesses in Lake Elizabeth, East Lake Lillian and Harrison townships in Kandiyohi County could have broadband connections within two years.
The Kandiyohi County Board will be considering a request for American Rescue Plan Act funds and a letter of support to go towards a broadband project in several townships.

The program is ideal for Kandiyohi County residents who know they are near a provider’s infrastructure, but don’t have internet access themselves. Additional inquiries about Kandiyohi County broadband can be sent to Sarah Swedburg at or 320-235-7370.

The Broadband Line Extension Connection Program was created during the 2022 Minnesota legislative session by the Department of Employment and Economic Development’s Office of Broadband Development.


That office will send a list of addresses to broadband providers offering service in Minnesota every six months, after which the office will hold a 60-day reverse auction for providers to bid to extend service. Once awarded, broadband providers will have one year to complete the broadband line extension project.

To learn more about the program and apply, visit the state’s website at . To request a paper application, call the Office of Broadband Development at 651-259-7610.

More by Jennifer Kotila:
The Willmar City Council is being asked to allow staff to request proposals for rebranding the city.
Amin Grocery, a Somali-owned grocery store in downtown Willmar, specializes in international foods and dry goods, and will be selling halal meat produced locally.
Many Raymond residents were not awakened by the sound, but it wasn't long before neighbors, volunteers and law enforcement officers were knocking on doors to start the evacuation process.
Everybody who was trained to help in emergency situations such as the train derailment overnight in Raymond showed up and knew exactly what needed to be done.
The pause is to allow Willmar Ten Investors additional time to solidify numbers on what the renovation of the former JCPenney building would cost.
The transformation of Bethesda Grand in Willmar began in 2016. The final phase began during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the remodel of the west wing and memory care unit into "neighborhoods." This year, the east wing will be remodeled and an addition constructed.
The Willmar City Council unanimously made the decision Monday to give Willmar Ten additional time to present more solid numbers of the cost to renovate the former JCPenney location in the Uptown Willmar mall to become the new community center and city hall.
The Council will make a decision between an estimated $14 to $16 million remodel or building new at a cost of $31 to $35 million building at its Monday, March 20, meeting.
Main Street Revitalization grants of up to $75,000 are available to cover 30% of the funding for eligible projects in downtown Willmar and along First Street South/Business 71.
Willmar was one of two Minnesota cities to be included on the listing. The city will also be featured in an upcoming edition of Business View magazine focused on American Economic Resiliency.

Jennifer Kotila is a reporter for West Central Tribune of Willmar, Minnesota. She focuses on local government, specifically the City of Willmar, and business.

She can be reached via email at: or phone at 320-214-4339.
What To Read Next
Get Local