The Rural Electrification Administration (REA) was a department of the United States federal government created on May 11th, 1935. The REA's task was to promote "electrification" in rural areas, which in the 1930s rarely were provided with electricity due to the cost of stringing electric lines to farmsteads.

The REA evolved into the RUS (Rural Utilities Service) whose mission remains the same but includes the charge to extend internet, and specifically broadband access throughout the U.S. via the broadband-loan program.

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