Step ahead on New Mexico broadband

Elected officials and other dignitaries break ground on Kit Carson Electric Co-op’s new $64 million broadband fiber-to-the-home project. (Photo By: Kit Carson Electric Co-op)

Federal, state and local officials joined representatives of Tri-State member Kit Carson Electric Cooperative earlier this week to break ground on a broadband fiber-to-home initiative that will bring high-speed Internet access to thousands of rural residents.

The project, financed in part through the 2009 stimulus act, will have applications for economic development, education, public safety and health care, as well as for smart grid and “green grid” initiatives.

“We have a history of bringing quality, reliable and affordable services to every part of our expansive service area,” said Luis Reyes, Jr., chief executive officer of the Taos-based co-op.

“Our membership said we should also look for such ways to better serve our diverse communities, and our board of directors has responded by approving this ambitious and much needed plan.”

Among the participants at the ceremony was Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., who said the broadband investment was what he had in mind when he voted for the stimulus legislation.

“This grant is not only creating jobs now in northern New Mexico, it is laying the groundwork to attract new businesses, improve healthcare services and create new education opportunities in the future,” he said.

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