The sprawling rural communities inland of Margaret River will see a major boost to mobile broadband capacity, with the State Government tipping in more than $400,000 this week. Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan, who is set to retire, confirmed $418,000 in funding to enhance connectivity for the sake of rural operators and emergency management around Scott River. The Government funds will underwrite the project by Connected Farms to install four communications towers, delivering a wide-area mobile broadband and voice-over-4G LTE network to a 936sqkm area. The predominantly dairy farm country needed access to more reliable digital technology to harness growth potential, the Minister said. “There are areas within Scott River East with poor, or no, mobile coverage,” Ms MacTiernan said. “The Connected Farms project is an opportunity to overcome this challenge and enhance the uptake of smart farming and business technologies within this prime agricultural precinct to lift productivity and enhance community safety. “There are more than 120 regional businesses and premises within the proposed coverage area which will have the opportunity to benefit from this new telecommunications infrastructure.” The project would also ensure anyone in that region could make 000 calls regardless of phone carrier.