A message from the Wayne County Commissioners:
Recently, the Wayne County Commissioners hired a broadband specialist to help improve service in Wayne County and to best implement state and federal money earmarked for rural broadband improvements. The specialist, Kelly Lewis, was hired thanks to a generous donation from the William H. Chatlos Charitable Gift Fund, that wants to proactively help resolve the technology challenges for Wayne County. The collaboration includes the Wayne County Community Foundation that will be acting as a fiscal passthrough.
Accelerate Wayne – The Gigabit & Dead Cell Zone Project began this week when the Wayne County Commissioners launched this survey for households and employers to help us pin-point dead cell zone areas, and to document available internet service quality and fees. We need the best county-wide baseline study of current providers and fees we can get. The more completed surveys we get back, the better. All surveys are confidential, and participation will not require you to do anything else. Even customers who are locked in to a current service contract, can complete surveys to help us gather the information for our baseline study.
Individuals can complete the HOUSEHOLD SURVEY.
Employers can complete the confidential BUSINESS SURVEY.
We ask employers to complete the SURVEY by February 7th and HOUSEHOLDS to compete the information by Feb 14th.
“Many PA Counties will be looking to improve broadband at the same time. This will make getting needed labor and equipment difficult. By acting quickly, and because of the help of our generous donors, Wayne County will be ahead of the situation, “stated the Wayne County Commissioners. “The primary reason we don’t have decent broadband services here, is because our rural population doesn’t offer the customer base ISP’s need to make infrastructure improvements. American Recovery Act Program (ARPA) money and other funding is being made available directly to the counties, not ISP’s, and we need to spend those funds as effectively as possible. We want to thank everyone who takes the time to complete the survey.”
Wayne County has benefitted from the expertise and guidance of a tech committee that has functioned under WEDCO (Wayne County Economic Development Corporation) for years. They will continue to advise the Commissioners on project funding.
------ Listen to the Wayne Tomorrow! Podcast featuring Kelly Lewis
WAYNE COUNTY– Households, employers, companies, schools, local governments, and non-profit organizations are rallying together in Wayne County to ask Employers and Households to complete quick surveys on existing broadband, cell service, and future 5G service to help expedite and improve the results of a broadband initiative project aimed to improve service and reduce costs for Wayne County residents. Please help by completing a survey, see the link below.
Your swift response will help us spur broadband options, broadband availability, and broadband investment across the County as well as eliminate dead cell zones and speed the deployment on next generation 5G wireless. Therefore, we ask that the confidential employer surveys are submitted by February 7, 2022 and household surveys submitted by February 14, 2022.
The Wayne County Broadband Project surveys for Employers and Households are posted here:
EMPLOYERS CLICK HERE: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J7YNG2S
HOUSEHOLDS CLICK HERE: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J7CQZBB
With more than 93% of e911 emergency calls coming from cell phones, securing excellent cell service is a public safety priority. Likewise, more than ever affordable and high-speed broadband is critical for employers, households, students, schools, tourism, and real estate markets!
A long-range project objective is gigabit city status for Wayne County’s more densely populated areas, where businesses and households can purchase synchronous gigabit internet connections (gigabit upload/download) for $1,000/year or less. While many PA, NJ, and NY zip codes have achieved gigabit city status, this Project seeks to spur gigabit investment and drop gigabit pricing. A second objective is to improve broadband and cellular service to the county’s less-densely populated areas wherever possible.
According to BroadbandNow, Wayne County ranks in the lowest quartile for county broadband coverage. Wayne County is excited to work with our consultant Lewis Strategic to improve these rankings. After years of broadband projects, his home county, nearby rural Monroe County, with equally challenging broadband geography, is ranked 4th best in the same survey. https://broadbandnow.com/Pennsylvania
Companies seeking to relocate to Wayne County should contact: Mary Beth Wood, Executive Director, WEDCO, firstname.lastname@example.org, 32 Commercial Street, Suite 1, Honesdale, PA 18431, 570-253-2537
Accelerate Wayne – The Gigabit & Dead Cell Zone Project - Goals and Objectives:
(1) Immediately conduct countywide survey of broadband, cell service, and costs; (2) Develop/implement solutions to increase broadband availability to underserved locations; (3) Develop/implement solutions to reduce Employer and Household broadband Mbps costs by 50%; (4) Develop/implement solutions to increase availability of gigabit connectivity to Honesdale, Hawley, and across Wayne County; (5) Identify dead cell zones with no cell service, and develop/implement solutions ways to eliminate them; (6) Help more organizations offer WiFi hotspots where cell coverage is weak or obstructed; (7) Develop/implement solutions to position the County for 5G wireless investment; and, (8) Develop/implement solution strategies to position Honesdale, Hawley, and other municipalities for Gigabit City status.
HOW CAN YOU HELP:
- Complete the Employer survey by February 7 and the Household survey by February 14.
- Share the Employer and Household survey links with as many employers and households as possible:
EMPLOYERS (confidential) CLICK HERE: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J7YNG2S
HOUSEHOLDS CLICK HERE: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J7CQZBB
- Post the survey link on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and social media groups!
- Invite us to speak on conference calls, virtual meetings, virtual coffee groups and other community activities!
- Post our Project videos when they are released and shared.
For more information contact:
Kelly Lewis: Kelly@LewisStrategic.com