The USDA is awarding $19.3 million in loans to provide broadband, distance learning and telemedicine services to rural portions of Illinois and Oklahoma.

In Oklahoma, Southern Plains Cable, LLC will receive a $15.3 million loan to build a fiber-optic broadband network serving a 55-square-mile area that includes the communities of Anadarko, Verden, and Chickasha. Illinois’ Moultrie Independent Telephone Company will receive a $4 million loan to make upgrades to fiber service in a portion of its service territory.

Both loans are being provided through USDA’s Telecommunications Programs of the Rural Utilities Service.

SOURCE:, Feb. 27, 2017