Columbia County makes plan to conduct broadband study
Natasha Vaughn is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media Columbia County officials are looking at a broadband study to help expand coverage in unserved and underserved parts of the county. The county Board of Supervisors Economic Development and Broadband committees May 24, discussed next steps and a proposal from the vendor MC Fiber Services. “We have five providers of broadband in Columbia County,” Columbia Economic Development Corporation President F. Michael Tucker said. “So it’s a patchwork quilt of where these gaps are and in many cases it’s almost as if there were doughnut holes around where service exists and where it doesn’t ....” The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which is part of the federal stimulus, has allocated funding for broadband services, Tucker said. Gallatin Town Supervisor John Reilly said the committee contacted three potential vendors to work on the broadband analysis and it is now recommending, MC Fiber. The company is willing to put boots on the ground to physically look at each road and verify the different installations of broadband to verify service areas. Mapping would take about eight weeks using MC Fiber, Reilly said, which is why the Broadband subcommittee decided to recommended the company to the Economic Development committee, Tucker said. The Finance Committee May 26, will discuss a resolution that would allow the CEDC to contract with MC Fiber Services for services, at the cost of $30,000. If the resolution is approved, it will go to the full Board of Supervisors for a vote on June 9. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.