Hebron looking at alternate Internet options

B y Jaime Thomas

Getting high-speed Internet in Hebron might not be as simple as officials previously thought.

During a meeting Monday night, Town Supervisor Brian Campbell told the town board he recently met with a representative from PrimeLink, a telecommunications company, to give him an estimate.

“I wanted a number. He came down and we drove all over the hills and valleys of Hebron. Line of sight here is going to be awful,” he said about wireless Internet installation.

Campbell said because of Hebron’s landscape and remoteness, line-of-sight Internet service is not ideal, and therefore might not be worth paying for.

“Wireless just isn’t cutting it,” he said. However, he is seriously looking into fiber optic line, which PrimeLink could potentially install for the cost of about $10,000 to $30,000 per mile.  Fiber optic would follow Hebron’s roads and therefore offer direct access to most household.

“I would like to know if the public really wants to pay that to do that,” he said. “It comes down to how bad do we want high-speed Internet.”

“The grant money is really dried up. We’re not big enough for anybody to get too concerned,” Campbell said. But on Tuesday, he said he learned there might be some grant funds available after all, which could significantly impact installation feasibility.

“If we can still find a way to grant fund the majority of this, that would really be a different story financially,” he said.

He estimated that a fiber optic line might equate to 60 cents per $1,000 in taxes for residents over about 20 years, but that most of them would save roughly $50 per month on cable, phone and Internet payments. He and several members of the board discussed that the installation of fiber optic cable can be expensive, because an energy source would have to be built every five miles.

Though some residents at the meeting questioned how long such a project would take, Campbell said the company could complete work quickly.

He said he would probe further into the idea and asked the board to consider asking for proposals, instead of bids, to see how effective the project would be.

“If it’s something people really want to do, let’s make it available. I don’t want to spend taxpayers’ money to do something that could only covers 10 to 20 percent of people—that’s nuts to do that. It would have to cover everybody,” he said.

Before making any decisions, Campbell said it would be best to put the idea on a ballot to let voters decide what they are willing to support.

Comments

comments

Read more in this week's Sentinel in newsstands now or click here to read right now with our e-edition.

Tags: , ,

518 Wheels – 10/20/17

518 Wheels 10-16-17.pdf-web.pdf

Railroaders roll over Horde, 55-12

white football4

By Matthew Saari An age-old rivalry was revived Friday night when the Whitehall football team traveled to neighboring Granville for […]

Hampton native, wife travel world

Ethan Atwood1

By Matthew Saari When the Whitehall Times last spoke with Hampton native Ethan Atwood, a Whitehall High School graduate, he […]

McEachron ‘made the world a better place’

mceachron

By Keith Harrington Before Wednesday night’s game against Warrensburg under the lights, the scoreboard at Granville’s field hockey field was […]

Scott trial begins Dec. 19; Defense motions for charge to be thrown out

putnam town court

By Krystle S. Morey A trial date of Dec. 19 has been set for former Granville mayor Thomas Scott to […]

Weekender – 10/13/17

Weekender 10_13_17.pdf-web.pdf

Lakes Region Freepress – 10/13/17

Lakes_10_13_17.pdf-web.pdf

North Country Freepress – 10/13/17

FreePress_10_13_17.pdf-web.pdf

Northshire Freepress – 10/13/17

Northshire_10_13_17.pdf-web.pdf

518 Wheels – 10/13/17

518 Wheels 10-9-17.pdf-web.pdf

Granville-Whitehall face off Friday night

GranvilleWhitehall

By Keith Harrington An event that was once billed as “one of New York’s longest-running high school football rivalries” will […]

Act 46: Pawlet-Rupert merger committee votes for choice

act 46

By Krystle S. Morey The seven-member committee tasked with merging Pawlet and Rupert school districts under Vermont’s Act 46 voted […]