In his quest to get high-speed Internet service extended to all of rural Iowa, Senator Tom Harkin sent a letter this week to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ann Venneman , who Harkin says is dragging her feet on the issue. Harkin says the U-S-D-A has nearly two-billion dollars in unused loans for rural broadband access and has only granted 12 loans worth 130-million. Some 90 loan applications were submitted, including four from Iowa, all four of which were rejected. The Iowa Democrat says it’s very important rural regions of the nation, especially in Iowa, get speedy onramps to the information superhighway.Harkin says broadband access would allow rural Iowans to start up new businesses, expand existing businesses and spark economic development. Harkin compares the importance of broadband Internet access to the arrival of electricity and telephone service to rural areas a half-century ago, but he says “U-S-D-A is just sitting on its hands.”