The new $85,000 project would be operated by the private company SpaceX and provide high-speed Internet for one year to 50 rural households in southeast Eau Claire County, Wis., near Augusta.
(TNS) — High speed Internet could be coming to rural parts of
During its meeting Tuesday, the Eau Claire County Broadband Committee unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the county to move forward with a rural broadband pilot project. The $85,000 project would be operated by the company
The county Administration Committee also approved the resolution during its meeting Tuesday afternoon. The resolution requires final approval next Tuesday from the
County Information Systems Director
The county is responsible for paying
The county committed to pay $30,000, or half of the remaining total, from its Information Systems budget. The other $30,000 would come from community donors, meaning individuals, businesses and other entities such as school districts.
Hayden said the 50 pilot project users, which still have to be determined, could donate as part of the fundraising effort, but their payment would not be required.
"Contributions from the participants would be more than welcome ... but I don't think we want to get into charging the participants for the service," Hayden said.
Some community members have already committed money, but much of the $30,000 still needs to be raised.
"We do have some contributions already, but we have a ways to go," Hayden said.
If $30,000 cannot be raised before the end of the project, the county must pay the remaining balance.
If the project receives final approval, the Broadband Committee will be responsible for setting up agreements with the 50 users who are part of the pilot project. If more than 50 want to participate in the project, the committee will determine criteria to select 50 users.
Internet service would be brought to users via low orbit satellites operated by
It was announced Monday that
"If we don't do this, some other counties will do it, and this could be very beneficial," Thompson said.
"I'm excited," Mowry said. "We've made a lot of progress in the past year. It's a good way to end the calendar year."
The next Broadband Committee meeting is scheduled for
(c)2020 the Leader-Telegram (Eau Claire, Wis.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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