Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 4

RM

| C O O P E R AT I O N

Co-ops,
legislators talk
broadband
progress in
rural Missouri

T
photo by Zach Smith

Above: U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt addresses Missouri's delegation during their meeting at the Capitol as AMEC CEO Caleb Jones looks
on. Missouri sent 70 delegates from around the state to speak with elected officials about issues and opportunities for rural
America. Bottom: U.S. Rep. Sam Graves meets with Ralls County Electric Cooperative CEO and Manager Lynn Hodges, left,
and United Electric Cooperative CEO James Bagley prior to a broadband roundtable held at United's Savannah office in April.

Co-ops on Capitol Hill

A

Missouri's rural electric leaders join thousands for
2019 NRECA Legislative Conference

delegation of 70 managers, directors and
employees of Missouri's Electric Cooperatives joined more than 2,000 of their counterparts from across the nation last month
as part of the 2019 NRECA Legislative Conference
in Washington, D.C.
The April 28-30 conference provided attendees with an opportunity to hear from some of the
nation's key policymakers and attend briefings
on the latest challenges facing the electric utility
industry. The highlight for co-op leaders, however,
was meeting with members of Congress on behalf
of their member-owners, informing lawmakers of
co-op priorities and urging them to continue working together to benefit rural America. National Rural
Electric Cooperative Association CEO Jim Matheson said electric co-ops' reputation for credibility
and knowledge of their communities makes them a
trusted source of information in Washington.
"Thousands of lobbyists knock on their doors
every day," said Matheson, who urged attendees to
continue building strong bonds with their members
of Congress. "It's that connection back home no one
has but us."
A key priority for Missouri's cooperatives during this year's conference was to promote the needs

of rural communities in infrastructure legislation.
Electric co-ops support a bipartisan effort to develop an infrastructure package that improves the economic outlook of rural communities.
Missouri's delegates urged members
of Congress to support co-op priorities such as modernizing the grid,
expanding rural broadband access
and electrifying the economy as
infrastructure legislation begins to
take shape. Missouri's delegation
also thanked the state's senators
and representatives for their unanimous support of the Rural Utilities
Service's Electric Loan program.
"It's so important that we meet
with elected officials because rural
Missourians know the best needs
of our communities," says Caleb
Jones, CEO of the Association of
Missouri Electric Cooperatives. "The
work the co-ops do is vitally important to rural America and their presence here shows that co-ops are
dedicated to working for our member-owners back home."

he discussion surrounding the role of
electric cooperatives bringing broadband internet to underserved areas
continued this spring in Missouri. U.S.
Sen. Roy Blunt and U.S. Rep. Sam Graves
made separate visits this past April to speak
with co-op leaders about the progress being
made in the northern part of the state.
After receiving $20 million in broadband
funding through the FCC Connect America
Fund Auction last fall, United Services - a
subsidiary of United Electric Cooperative
- continues to connect homes, schools and
businesses in northwest Missouri. As a result,
areas that traditional carriers had previously
deemed too expensive to serve with fiber will
remain a viable place to work and live. United
Electric Cooperative CEO James Bagley said
while construction must be completed within
six years United is ahead of schedule on a
four-year plan.
"If we want to keep rural people living in
the rural areas, you're going to have to have
broadband," Bagley said. "The sooner we get it
out there, the better chance we have of being
able to keep people out there."

photo by Heather Berry

Volume 72

|

JUNE 2019

|

Number 6

MISSOURI
RURAL

"Devoted to the rural way of life"

Rural Missouri is published monthly by the Association of Missouri
Electric Cooperatives, Caleb Jones, CEO/executive vice president.
Individual subscription rate: $10 per year or $22 for three
years, taxes and postage included. Group rate for members of
participating RECs $2.22, plus taxes and postage, paid from equity
accruing to the member. Delivery as specified by subscriber. If not
specified, delivery will be by periodical class mail at subscriber's
expense. Periodical Class postage paid at Jefferson City, MO, and
additional mailing offices. Copyright 2019, Association of Missouri
Electric Cooperatives. Call for reprint rights.

4

RURAL MISSOURI | JUNE 2019

EDITORIAL STAFF: Jim McCarty, editor, jmccarty@ruralmissouri.coop
Paul Newton, managing editor, pnewton@ruralmissouri.coop | Heather Berry, associate editor, hberry@ruralmissouri.coop
Megan Backes, creative director, mbackes@ruralmissouri.coop | Zach Smith, field editor, zsmith@ruralmissouri.coop
Angie Jones-Wheeler, co-op page designer
ADVERTISING: Mary Davis, production manager, mdavis@ruralmissouri.coop
Postmasters: Send address changes to Rural Missouri, P.O. Box 1645, Jefferson City, MO 65102.
Subscribers: Report change of address to your local cooperative. Do not send change of address to Rural Missouri.
Advertising standards: Advertising published in Rural Missouri is accepted on the premise that the merchandise and services offered are
accurately described and sold to customers at the advertised price. Rural Missouri and Missouri's electric cooperatives do not endorse
any products or services advertised herein. Advertising that does not conform to these standards or that is deceptive or misleading is
never knowingly accepted by this publication.

Editorial: Rural Missouri, P.O. Box 1645, Jefferson City, MO 65102
573-659-3423 | info@ruralmissouri.coop | www.ruralmissouri.coop
Advertising: mdavis@ruralmissouri.coop | 573-659-3400
National Advertising Representative: American MainStreet Publications;
611 S. Congress St., Suite 504; Austin, TX 78704 | 573-659-3400

USPS 473-000 ISSN 0164-8578

Circulation of this issue: 560,382


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Rural Missouri - June 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - June 2019

Contents
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Intro
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Cover1
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Cover2
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Contents
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 4
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 5
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 6
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 7
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 8
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 9
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 10
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 11
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 12
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 13
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 14
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 15
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 16
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 17
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 18
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 19
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 20
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 21
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Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 27
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 28
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 29
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 30
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 31
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Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 40
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 41
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - 42
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Cover3
Rural Missouri - June 2019 - Cover4
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