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The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) published this newsletter to highlight the important role that national banks and federal savings associations (collectively, banks) can play in helping rural communities gain reliable, high-speed internet access through broadband networks
Banks financing certain broadband development initiatives can receive Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) consideration for promoting economic development in certain rural communities and helping to revitalize distressed and low- and moderate-income communities across the nation.
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, provides an overview of broadband technologies and explains how banks financing broadband initiatives can help reduce the digital divide in rural communities in need of reliable, high-speed internet access.
First National Bank of Fairfax, Minn., and other local banks are helping to finance a cooperative formed by 10 cities and 17 townships determined to provide quality, high-speed internet access in southwestern Minnesota. The case study serves as a working model for rural communities interested in establishing public-private cooperatives to deliver quality internet.
A community bank's decision to finance Palmer Wireless began a successful partnership that turned into a decade-long relationship, benefiting the bank, Palmer Wireless, and the communities the bank serves by expanding an existing broadband network.
U.S. Bank used the national bank public welfare investment authority and helped to finance a new market tax credit project that expanded an existing broadband network for rural residents in Appalachian communities in northeastern Ohio.
United Bank invested in a fiber-optic network solution to communicate more effectively between its rural branches using video conferencing and other online communication channels. This investment also benefited several local businesses that needed high-quality internet service.
First National Bank Alaska and U.S. Bank made loans backed by federal loan guarantees to benefit Alaska's Native communities by financing the expansion of fiber-optic networks in geographically remote areas that for too long had poor or no internet access.
Collection: Community Developments Investments
Banks are helping to finance broadband development initiatives in rural communities across America that are struggling without reliable, high-speed internet access.
Call (202) 649-6420 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. This and previous editions are available on the OCC's website at www.occ.gov/communityaffairs.
Articles by non-OCC authors represent the authors’ own views and not necessarily the views of the OCC.