Broadband Stretches the Traditional Investment Envelope:
The need for due diligence of high-speed broadband telecommunication investments by electric
cooperatives is important. Major technology upgrades such as an expansion of broadband
coverage come with significant, and sometimes unprecedented, challenges and costs. The
business cases and cost recovery mechanisms are different for so-called “last-mile” deployments
in which a cooperative extends broadband communications to homes and businesses in the
community compared to operationally driven broadband expansion for internal communication
purposes. The purpose of this executive white paper is to provide CEOs and other decision
makers at electric cooperatives who are considering significant broadband deployments with a
high-level, due diligence framework.
NRECA, NRTC, CoBank and NRUCFC developed this guide to help electric cooperatives vet
investment proposals by posing key questions that need to be asked when plans to expand
broadband telecommunications and to offer broadband-enabled services are put on the table.
This executive brief is the first step toward a structured, decision-making template for
evaluating broadband investments, as well as the operational and administrative burdens
associated with offering telecommunication services. FULL GUIDE