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Hays receives national recognition as Smart Rural Community


Special to the HDN

Special to the HDN

Hays, through the utilization of Nex-Tech's fiber-to-the-premise, is one of seven communities nationwide to be honored with the title Smart Rural Community by NTCA-The Rural Broadband Association. NTCA cited Hays' advanced fiber communications services and collaboration with local leaders in education, manufacturing and health care as keys to its success.

Hays achieved this recognition in a competitive process conducted by NTCA this past summer. Applications from communities across the country were reviewed by a panel of experts from a variety of fields. Hays was honored with an award for deploying advanced technologies and leveraging those technologies to enable innovation in the areas of economic development and commerce, education, enhanced health care, government services, security and energy use.

In addition to Hays, six other communities in Minnesota, Kansas, North Dakota, Florida and Indiana were recognized.

"Hays is a prime example of the power of a broadband connection and a steadfast commitment to growth and prosperity," said NTCA Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield. "Not only are the people of Hays charting their own path to a more prosperous future, they are also creating a road map for many more communities across the country to follow suit."

The NTCA Smart Rural Community initiative recognizes and celebrates the efforts of rural telecommunications providers and their communities to deliver technologies that make rural communities vibrant places in which to live and do business. The goal of the initiative is to foster the development of Smart Rural Communities throughout rural America by recognizing trailblazers and providing resources to assist broadband providers and connected industries.

"We are pleased and excited to accept this award," said Larry Sevier, Nex-Tech's chief executive officer. "We have worked hard with our local leaders to ensure that our citizens have access to advanced communications and the many benefits those services enable. We look forward to building on our success for many years to come."