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Image of fiber optic cables.
This program offers funding to facilitate long-term development and opportunities in rural America that don’t have sufficient access to broadband.

Ponderosa Receives USDA Funding for Fiber Optic Upgrades

O’NEALSPonderosa Communications, Inc. is pleased to announce it has been awarded funding to improve its rural infrastructure. This award will assist in Ponderosa’s mission of delivering quality communications solutions by moving its customers from a copper-based network to a fiber-optic connection.

Image of the USDA logo. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded a $6.4 million loan and a $6.4 million grant to Ponderosa Telephone Company through the ReConnect III program. The project will deploy 63.7 miles of fiber-to-the-premise technology to 299 locations in portions of the Auberry, Big Creek, and Shaver Lake exchanges.

Image of the Table Top Telephone logo. Ponderosa’s subsidiary company in Arizona, Table Top Telephone, also received USDA funding. The $3.7 million grant will fund 43.5 miles of fiber internet to 179 locations in Apache County.

Image of Kristann Mattes.

Ponderosa President Kristann Mattes.

Ponderosa President Kristann Mattes believes these awards will change the quality of life for many customers. “Ponderosa understands the importance of staying informed on communication trends and delivering the best technology possible to our customers,” said Mattes. “This funding will continue our tradition of investing in the well-being of our community and its future.”

These USDA ReConnect awards are the first for Ponderosa and Table Top, but hopefully they won’t be the last. In the company’s ongoing effort to improve customer value and satisfaction, Ponderosa will continue to seek ways to ensure the underserved and unserved have access to quality communications and emerging technology.

Image of Chad Rupe.

Chad Rupe.

“Modern communications requires fiber to close the digital divide,” said General Manager Chad Rupe. “We intend to continue to push fiber optic technology throughout our service territories. When this capacity is matched with our commitment to our customers in the places we work and live, our customers thrive.”



About Ponderosa

As a family-owned and operated business for five generations, there’s nothing more important to us than keeping our customers connected with family and friends.

That’s why at Ponderosa we strive to continuously push the boundaries of what’s possible, upgrading our network and advancing our products to give our community the best experience. We are constantly investing in our infrastructure to provide a network that’s optimized for today’s modern technology so you can stay connected.

Image of the Ponderosa logo. Ponderosa’s corporate offices are located in O’Neals, California, in the heart of the Sierra foothills. Our eighty employees serve over 10,000 homes and businesses in rural communities from the southern California desert to the central California high Sierra; approximately 4,000 square miles from sea level to mountainous elevations.

Ponderosa’s subsidiary company, Table Top Telephone, operates out of Ajo, Arizona. Locally, thirty employees serve approximately 4,000 subscriber lines in six rural communities across Arizona.

Check out this extended video about the USDA’s ReConnect III program.

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