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Texas County Communities Hero Newv2

Hall County Texas


The Hall County Broadband Team has completed its community technology assessment. The results of the assessment can be found by clicking the symbol for each of the sections below. The Solutions sector includes recommended actions the community can implement to improve the broadband and technology ecosystem at a local level. It should be noted that much of the assessment was conducted during the global COVID-19 pandemic. This worldwide event likely impacted many of the metrics included in this assessment.

Connected Infrastructure in Hall County, Texas

Broadband access refers to the infrastructure that enables a high-speed internet connection. There are two primary types of broadband connections: fixed and mobile.

Fixed broadband is delivered to a user via several technology platforms including cable, digital subscriber line (DSL) over phone line, fiber optics, and fixed wireless. Fixed broadband is designed for stationary use at a fixed location such as a home, business, or institution. From a single location, however, fixed broadband service is often broadcast as a Wi-Fi network to connect nearby devices.

The following interactive map shows where broadband is available in the area.

Broadband connects people to the world and opens the door to opportunity. Where there is broadband, there is development, achievement, and innovation. In rural Texas, broadband looks like economic development, greater scholastic achievement, workforce expansion, connection to telehealth services, infrastructure improvement, and general technological advancements. When embraced as an integral part of life, broadband contributes to a thriving community and promotes greater quality of life for residents. In Hall County, it is important to embrace broadband for how it can both contribute to and improve the current way of life. The survey results reflect that community sectors are not currently engaged online beyond email, Facebook, and the occasional website update. If businesses, government institutions, healthcare providers, and schools increased their online engagement and presence, the general community could experience economic growth and development.


Increase broadband adoption among residents, businesses, and community institutions to facilitate economic and community growth.


Action 1 – Hall County leaders should identify key advocates in each of the following areas to educate the general community about the short and long-term benefits of broadband adoption.

  • Economy: Economic Development, Memphis Chamber of Commerce, Hall County Commissioners Court, Panhandle Regional Planning Commission
  • Telehealth: Memphis Drug, Turkey EMS
  • Telework: Memphis Chamber of Commerce, Workforce Solutions, School Superintendents (William Alexander, Jackie Jenkins)
  • Communication: Broadband Providers

Promote e-commerce as the gateway to the global economy: As businesses and community organizations expand their online presence, they expand their customer pool and ultimately increase profit. By utilizing websites and social media to market services and sell products, businesses can take part in a larger digital economy. As Hall County businesses succeed in the global market, the benefit will be sown directly in the community through increased employment, increased wages, and greater economic success.

Showcase physical health- and time-saving benefits of telehealth services: The future of medicine is online. For communities who lack large hospitals, general practitioners, surgical attendees, and medical specialists, telehealth is a natural substitute. Online medical services allow communities to speak with top-of-the-line doctors, dentists, surgeons, dermatologists, and veterinarians through a click of a button. These online services are not only important in times of emergency, but they allow residents flexibility when meeting with medical professionals. No longer do you have to take off work to drive to the clinic, but rather you can step outside your office building and speak to your physician through your phone and then return to your desk.

Highlight economic and practical advantages of telework: Americans have long valued flexible work schedules including work from home and part-time shifts. The COVID-19 pandemic further showcased just how important it is for homeowners and renters alike to be able to reliably connect to the internet to fulfill their professional obligations. By teleworking, an employee can reside in rural Hall County but be employed by a company in Dallas, Houston, Lubbock, or another state entirely. Ultimately, this can be used as a marketing tool by the community: live here, enjoy a lower cost of living, but don’t give up your online job! Telework expands employee and employer options which in turn can lead to greater economic success. The key to telework is adequate digital skills to engage online and a reliable internet connection.

Expand use of digital communication for personal and professional networking: Broadband is what allows a grandmother to FaceTime her grandchildren who live seven states away in the middle of a global pandemic. Broadband is what empowers communication today; it is what connects people and allows them to stay engaged, informed, and close despite time and space. As technology and society continues to evolve, broadband will continue to be the common thread in all things communication. Broadband will be how companies communicate (be it Zoom calls, Microsoft Teams Conferences) or how families stay connected.

Action 2- Community leaders should partner with local and regional organizations to facilitate free digital literacy and digital skills workshops. Workshop curricula should be curated using material created by the County and publicly available programs, such as those designed by AARP and Digital Learn (resources linked below). Classes should be offered at local facilities, such as the school gym or the community center, and be advertised through the local media. The intention is for residents and community leaders to understand the importance of digital engagement and to feel comfortable using online platforms. The more the community engages online, the more they will reap the benefits of a digital lifestyle. According to survey results, only 28% of businesses require employees to participate in continuing education, yet 78% said technology training was very or moderately important to them when considering their workforce. If employees improve their digital skills, they not only contribute more to local businesses, but they expand their quality of life at home through online banking, entertainment, and general digital device use.

 Community partners can include:

  • The High Ground of Texas
  • Panhandle Regional Planning Commission
  • Memphis Chamber of Commerce
  • Schools: Memphis ISD and Turkey-Quitaque ISD
  • Institutions and businesses who would directly benefit from greater digital adoption (i.e., banks, telehealth providers, online schools)

Workshop topics can include:

  • How to teleconference
  • Cybersecurity 101
  • Microsoft Office skills
  • Intro to social media

Action 2A – Community workshops should focus on increasing the online presence of community institutions. This includes creating websites and social media accounts for businesses, government officials, healthcare providers, schools, etc. Fewer than one in three businesses (32%) indicate they have a website, while only 29% of government entities said they currently have a website. Websites are a key marketing tool for businesses and an important resource for emergency preparedness in the government sector. Websites serve an important purpose when residents are seeking updates or need emergency information.

Website creation can be a stand-alone workshop topic or it can be integrated into a larger discussion about online safety. Business owners who currently have a website, or County/school IT directors could be a great resource to lead this workshop as they have experience working with websites.

Action 2B – Community workshop resources and curricula should be made publicly available at the library in the form of printed packets. Workshops are a great opportunity to connect directly with residents, but not all residents are able to attend at the designated time. As such, it is important that the material from the workshops be made available for interested residents to pick up and review on their own time.

Action 3 - Discussing the benefits of broadband should become commonplace in Hall County. County commissioners, city council members, school board members, and the like should include broadband as a regular agenda item at community meetings. It is important for all residents, far and wide in Hall County, to understand the importance of broadband and to feel empowered to adopt and use it. For broadband to be accessible, it needs to be presented in a way that everyone understands. It is important to consider that 33.6% of the Hall County population is Hispanic or Latino, and 29.6% of residents speak a language other than English at home, according to the US Census. Therefore, all materials pertaining to broadband workshops, affordability, and accessibility should be available in English and Spanish.


Community institutions: businesses, schools, libraries, organizations; Local government leaders and elected officials; Broadband providers; Community residents


The complete guide to digital skills

AARP Joins with Nonprofit to Teach Tech to Older Adults

Digital Learn: Use a computer to do almost anything!

Census: Hall County

Improving the Quality of Life in Rural America With Broadband Internet

Implementing Productive Teleworking with Business-Quality Mobile Communications

How Better Broadband Access Will Help Telemedicine Reach Its Full Potential

Texas Broadband Providers by County

The Benefit that Broadband Internet Offers for Ecommerce

According to the US Census, the poverty rate in Hall County is 22.9%. More specifically, 34.7% of children under the age of 18 live in poverty. This is almost double the national average (18.5%). These statistics paint a realistic need in Hall County for free and reduced-cost digital services. For children under the age of 18, this need is especially prevalent as it relates to online educational opportunities. It’s important to recognize the broadband access is two-fold. First, a resident needs access to an internet device, such as a laptop or tablet. Second, the resident needs access to broadband to use it. A laptop or tablet is only as good as the internet connection that it can access,


Increase access, availability, and use of broadband by addressing the cost barrier and providing additional public services.


Action 1 – In the broadband survey, 43% of households who do not have internet stated cost was their main barrier. Of those who do have broadband at their home, 68% said cost was a reason for their current dissatisfaction. Furthermore, according to the US Census, the median household income in Hall County is $34,673. This is almost half of the median household income in the United States ($62,843). These statistics boldly present a need for affordable broadband options in Hall County. As such, it is important for qualifying residents to know there are options that exist to make broadband more affordable. Using online resources, Hall County residents can identify local and national providers who offer special low-cost services for vulnerable populations, older adults, and low-income families with children. Such resources include EducationSuperHighway and EveryoneOn.

Using the above resources, households in the following ZIP codes may be eligible for multiple broadband assistance programs:

  • 79239
  • 79245
  • 79259
  • 79261
  • 79233

Action 2 – Community leaders and institutions should publicly promote programs and opportunities designed to reduce the cost of broadband service. Notices can be sent out in the water bill, posted in the newspaper, circulated in monthly school newsletters, discussed at Commissioners Court and City Council meetings, or advertised at frequently visited community buildings and businesses.

Community leaders and institutions to consider:

  • Memphis and Turkey-Quitaque ISDs
  • Local and county government: Memphis, Turkey, Estelline,
  • Local media: KLSR 105 Radio, The Sun Newspaper
  • Memphis Chamber of Commerce and local businesses
  • Other: Convention Center, Memphis Public Library

Programs to promote:

  • Lifeline
  • Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB)
  • PCs for People

Action 3 – Reduced-cost broadband at home is but part of the solution. To ensure all residents have access to the internet, Hall County should increase the number of publicly available computers in frequently-accessed locations. This can include increasing the number of devices in locations that currently serve the public or the addition of computers, laptops, and tablets in locations that currently have none. The County, schools, and library can use funds or grant money to acquire new devices or partner with community organizations and internet service providers to outfit buildings with computing devices.

Locations to consider:

  • Memphis ISD and Turkey-Quitaque Schools
  • Memphis Chamber of Commerce
  • Memphis Public Library
  • Government Buildings: City Hall, Courthouse

 Responsible Parties

Community institutions: businesses, schools, libraries, organizations; Local government leaders and elected officials; Broadband providers; Community residents


Hall County community organizations and leaders should immediately market low-cost broadband programs and resources. New or improved computing devices should be available around the community by end the end of Q1 2022.


Lifeline Support for Affordable Communications

Companies Near Me: USAC

Emergency Broadband Benefit

Texas Broadband Providers by County

Census: Hall County

The Sun Newspaper


K-12 Bridge to Broadband

According to the broadband survey conducted in Hall County in partnership with Connected Nation Texas, the average download speed reported by residential survey respondents was 13.7 Mbps. This is significantly lower than the FCC’s definition of broadband at 25/3 Mbps. An average download speed of 13.7 Mbps would barely support one to two devices at any given time - a standard that is not sustainable in an increasingly digital society. Couple this slow download speed with the fact that 51% of survey respondents indicated they telework in some capacity. Teleworkers cannot be successful or competitive in their job fields without reliable and fast internet connections. Beyond telework, it is important to recognize how slow internet speeds negatively impact and deter digital engagement.


Increase broadband speeds in Hall County through infrastructure development and improvement projects.


Action 1 – To begin addressing slow internet speeds, Hall County leaders need to meet with internet service providers (ISPs) in the community. This includes meeting with those providers who have been allocated funding through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) and Connect America Fund (CAF). Community leaders should assess the status and viability of ongoing or upcoming infrastructure improvement and expansion projects. It will be important to know and understand where new or improved infrastructure is being built around the County and how it will affect broadband speeds and delivery to residents. Furthermore, when meeting with providers, community leaders should address the survey results, highlighting the need for affordable, reliable, and fast service. It is important for providers to understand the consumer base in Hall County to provide the best customer service experience.

RDOF Phase I Auction Winning Bids:

  • Resound Networks awarded $260,038.20 to serve 403 locations

CAF Phase II Auction Winning Bids:

  • Nextlink awarded $241,065 to serve 25 Locations

Action 2 –   During meetings with providers, the community should discuss how they could be a project partner, be it financial or strategic in nature. Hall County should consider if there are resources at their disposable that could speed up project completion or incentivize a new one altogether. For example, how could Hall County speed-up the local permitting process or open dialogue about local lands/infrastructure that would speed up project completion. Ultimately, Hall County should play a strategic role in ongoing or planned projects that will widely benefit the most residents.

Hall County has been allocated $575,722.00 in Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds. Should Hall County choose to spend any of the federal funds on broadband, it is important that they are prepared, informed, and readily equipped to begin working with reliable partners.

Action 3 - Expanding and improving broadband infrastructure is a team effort that requires organization, time, and funding. Having regional and community partners who can advocate and help move the needle forward is important in any large project. Hall County should engage as many interested parties as possible in broadband planning efforts with the express intent of improving broadband access, adoption, and use among Hall County residents.

Regional Organizations and elected officials to partner with:

  • Panhandle Regional Planning Commission
  • Memphis Chamber of Commerce
  • Other “Connected Communities:” Donley, Wheeler, Fisher, Throckmorton, Shackelford Counties in Texas, others to come
  • State Rep. David Spiller’s Office

 Responsible Parties

Local units of government; Broadband providers; Community and regional organizations


Community leaders should begin meeting with ISPs within three months of receiving this plan. While Hall County does not have to allocate funding or spend federal dollars within that same three months, the community should outline the scope of broadband infrastructure projects (ongoing and planned) within that timeline.


Texas Broadband Providers by County

Auction 904: Rural Digital Opportunity Fund

Connect America Fund Phase II FAQs

Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds

Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, County Allocation

Guide to Federal Broadband Funding Opportunities in the U.S.

Current Broadband Funding

BroadbandUSA: Federal Funding Guide