HARTFORD, S.D. (KELO) — F-C-C commissioner Brenden Carr is back in South Dakota. Carr and Senator John Thune toured a Hartford company specializing in utility installation. Senator Thune is the ranking member of the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Media, and Broadband. So he likes to keep up with what is happening in that industry. He invited Commissioner Carr to join him on today’s tour.

They came here to Anco Underground to tour the facility and learn about what the company does. Thune and Carr have a history of working together.

“We have a lot of federal subsidies that are coming down the pipe to expand rural broadband,” said Carr. “We want to make sure that the policies put in place make sense for rural communities so those dollars don’t just go to big cities, that they look out for the unconnected or under-served communities as well, and South Dakota still has a lot of those communities.”

Thune says he has made it a priority to ensure South Dakota is well connected.

“I’m really passionate about making sure that rural areas of the country have the same opportunity to participate in what is happening in the more populated areas of the country with high-speed internet services,” said Thune.

Anco Underground installs just about any kind of underground utility. They also have a tower division that works above ground.

This company started out with two guys at the height of Covid, they’ve grown fast and now they have more than 60 employees. Mike Young, the President of Anco says he’s grateful Thune and Carr are willing to learn about this end of the communications industry.

“It’s really exciting to have their support from a contractor’s level because our work and our employees is not easy. You know it’s hard work every day, but it’s fulfilling work when you go and basically connect the nation,” said Young.

Thune says keeping up with technology is important for South Dakota because it levels the playing field and allows us to compete with more populated states.