About HCTC

Born as a Cooperative in February, 1951, Hill Country Telephone Cooperative has grown and evolved into HCTC, the company you see today. On February 13, 1951, a group of five men formed the Cooperative for the purpose of furnishing telephone service in rural areas of the Texas Hill Country. Larger telecom companies had deemed the areas as unprofitable and had passed them by on the way to larger cities.

Operating under the cooperative principles and governed by a Board of Directors, Hill Country Telephone Cooperative grew and expanded by offering state-of-the art technologies to rural subscribers. When changes in regulation permitted the delivery of telephone service in competitive markets, Hill Country Telecommunications was established as a subsidiary of the company to capitalize on those changes and diversify the services offered. Hill Country Telephone Cooperative and Hill Country Telecommunications provided a plethora of telecommunications related products and services, including high-speed Internet, data storage, networking/IT solutions, and more, across 15 counties in the Texas Hill Country (including competitive markets in Mason, Kerrville, Fredericksburg, Junction, and Sonora) spanning almost 3000 square miles.

Recently, both the parent Cooperative and its subsidiary have combined their branding and customer communication efforts under the moniker of HCTC. Realizing the importance of access to high-speed Internet for rural economic development, HCTC has embarked on a mission to make higher bandwidth available throughout its service area. As the future of communications is unfolding and revealing broadband as the preferred technology, HCTC is strategically positioning itself to meet the ever-changing needs of its members and customers, today and into the future.

2022 CEO Report

Craig Cook

Craig Cook

HCTC Family,

As we take pause to conduct our 71st Annual Meeting and report on the progress we’ve made over the past year, I want to take a moment and share a sincere “thank you!” On behalf of the employees, management team and your Board of Directors, we appreciate you, our member owners, for your continued support in 2022. This has been a rewarding year for HCTC on numerous fronts as we continue to serve our communities through the provision of advanced broadband and telecommunications services. Above all, we strive to provide these services to you with unparalleled customer service.

Since our last annual meeting, the challenges facing our country have changed, but continue in new forms. Whether it be global conflicts, supply chain issues, or the economy and inflation, we’ve all been tested during this past year. And while I do not want to equate our business issues with seemingly generational trials, it is important to share with you an update on an important battle that HCTC has been engaged in for over 2 years now.

Beginning in January of 2021, HCTC and other rural telephone providers began incurring sizable reductions of funding from the Texas Universal Service Fund (“TUSF”). The TUSF enables HCTC to provide affordable service to the rural areas we serve and is mandated under Texas law. Although prior PUC Commissioners chose not to take the necessary steps to fully fund the TUSF, a vast majority of the Texas Legislature supports TUSF and rural carriers like HCTC who rely on this fund to keep rates affordable. The PUC’s inaction over the last two years has resulted in HCTC being short-paid over $5M. This avoidable impact left HCTC and other providers no other option but to file a lawsuit against the PUC to restore TUSF funding that is required by law and the PUC’s own rules. In July of this year, an appeals court in Austin ruled in favor of rural carriers and ordered the PUC to restore funding and pay back over $200M in TUSF that was not paid over the last two years.

We are pleased with the Court’s decision – requiring the PUC to comply with the law, but are disappointed that the PUC chose to restore payments to rural companies by increasing the TUSF assessment rate from its former 3.3.% to over 24% – an amount that far exceeds what is needed to fund the TUSF. The TUSF assessment is levied on taxable intrastate telecommunications revenue and funds the TUSF. HCTC is displeased with the PUC’s decision to raise the assessment rate so dramatically and is working with our industry partners and the PUC to implement a more reasonable solution that will reduce the amount you pay.

Although we have had plenty of potential distractions over the course of the year, HCTC has remained on course and continues to focus on its mission – “To be the premier provider of modern telecommunications and broadband services throughout our region.” To this point, we continue to work hard each day to treat every customer like family, while providing the most robust services available – all at competitive prices.

In recent years, HCTC has received national recognition for our efforts to serve our customers. We remain committed to our communities and have invested millions of dollars in our network in 2022 to improve the quality of service to our members while aggressively expanding our fiber network to bring many new members to our cooperative. Likewise, we continue to invest in the people of our community – assisting those in need throughout our area by continued donations to local charitable organizations, our local schools and libraries and first responders.

As we look ahead to 2023, we remain excited about the numerous opportunities for our communities and the role that we’ll play to assure that you can leverage all of the benefits of broadband and telecommunications connectivity. HCTC is honored to provide these essential services to its communities.

Thank you again for your membership and support of HCTC!

 

Regards,

Craig Cook
CEO, HCTC

Board of Directors

 

Bob Trees

District 1A Ingram

Kari Short

District 1B Ingram

Randy Bass

District 2 Hunt

Jim Haynie

District 3 Mountain Home/ Garven Store

Steve Stengel

District 4 Doss

Dorrie Cooper

District 5 Fredonia, Katemcy, Pontotoc and Streeter

Kathy Bohn

District 6A Comfort/ Sisterdale

Anthony Bohnert

Anthony Bohnert

District 6B Comfort/ Sisterdale

Kari Potter

District 7 Center Point

Tracy Castillo

District 8 Medina/ Tarpley

Linda Reagor

District 9 Frio Canyon (includes Concan, Leakey, Reagan Wells and Rio Frio)

Director NameDirector AddressDistrict/ExchangeTerm Expiration
Kari A. Potter, President428 China St Center Point, TX 78010District #7 Center PointOctober 2023
Tracy Castillo7626 FM 2107 Medina, TX 78055 District #8 Medina & TarpleyOctober 2024
Kathy BohnPO Box 21 Comfort, TX 78013District #6A Comfort & SisterdaleOctober 2023
Randy BassPO Box 226 Hunt, TX 78024District #2 HuntOctober 2024
Kari ShortP O Box 1109 Ingram, Texas 78025District #1B IngramOctober 2024
James E. Haynie, Vice President136 Aermotor Ln Mt. Home, TX 78058-0404District #3 Mt. Home & Garven StoreOctober 2023
Dorrie CooperPO Box 1394 Mason, TX 76856District #5 Fredonia, Katemcy, Pontotoc & StreeterOctober 2025
Linda Reagor, Secretary-TreasurerPO Box 505 Leakey, TX 78873District #9 Frio CanyonOctober 2023
Anthony Bohnert802 Evergreen Comfort, TX 78013District #6B Comfort & SisterdaleOctober 2025
Steve StengelPO Box 9 Doss, TX 78618District #4 DossOctober 2024
Robert TreesPO Box 1064 Ingram, TX 78025District #1A IngramOctober 2025

Bylaws

As a member-owned cooperative with an elected Board of Directors, HCTC is governed by a set of organizational bylaws. Download the HCTC Bylaws.

On February 13, 1951, a group of five men met and formed Hill Country Telephone Cooperative, Inc. (Hill Country) for the purpose of furnishing area-wide telephone service in rural areas to the widest practical number of users. Being based on the Cooperative plan at the lowest cost, consistent with sound economy and good management, today Hill Country Telephone Cooperative provides telecommunication services in 15 exchanges located in 14 counties spread over 2900 square miles in rugged Hill Country terrain. The Cooperative is governed by a Board of Directors, with the 11 members representing nine districts.

The Cooperative’s objectives are to continue to enhance, improve and maintain telecommunications services at its highest level at the least possible cost to its members. As the Texas Hill Country continues to grow and the needs and demographics of its subscriber base evolve, Hill Country Telephone Cooperative, realizing the importance of broadband availability for rural economic development, has embarked on a mission to make broadband available throughout its service area. As the future of telecommunications is unfolding and broadband is the direction, Hill Country is strategically positioning itself to meet the ever-changing needs of its members, today and into the future.

Any person, firm, association, corporation, or body politic or subdivision thereof, may become a member of Hill Country Telephone Cooperative, Inc. by agreeing to comply with and be bound by the Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws of the Cooperative and any rules and regulations adopted by the Board of Directors that are consistent with local, state and federal law.

Meet Our Management Team

Craig Cook | Chief Executive Officer

Craig Cook

Chief Executive Officer

Scott Link | Chief Operations Officer

Scott Link

Chief Operations Officer