Serving the needs of Upstate New York towns
Serving the needs of Upstate New York towns
Upstate New York Towns Association, Inc.
Upstate New York Towns Association, Inc.

Serving the Unique Needs and Interests
of Upstate NY Towns

July 18th, 2019 marked
SIX years since the creation of
Upstate NY Towns Association Inc.!

Thank you all  for your support!

 

The Association will continue to deliver quality programs and services to Upstate NY towns by promoting the common good and general welfare of the towns and their residents.

In September of 2019, Upstate NY Towns Association President, Carolyn Price, spoke at the joint Senate and Assembly Public Hearing in Albany, NY.

What follows is her full testimony.

Joint Senate and Assembly Public Hearing

Subject:  Rural Broadband

Purpose:  To identify current broadband needs in rural New York State

 

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

11:00 am

Hearing Room A

Legislative Office Building, 2nd Floor

Albany, NY 12247

 

My name is Carolyn Price, and I am speaking today as President of the Upstate New York Towns Association, www.upstatenyta.org and Supervisor of the Town of Windsor, Broome County.  I am also speaking for people who make huge sacrifices because they have no internet access such as driving a 40 mile roundtrip to do banking.

 

My remarks will focus on recommendations to identify and reach the unserved and underserved with broadband in rural areas of New York State.

 

New York State broadband is delivered via wireline technologies and wireless technologies.  However, we don’t know how much broadband coverage we truly have, particularly in rural areas.  To continue to move forward and have access for the unserved and underserved, we need to know what we have, where it is and options to reach the unserved and underserved areas.

 

Why don’t we know what we have and where it is?  The maps are faulty because the FCC allows internet providers to claim on Form 477 an area as served if only one home in a census block has internet service.

 

Recommendation #1:  Work with the FCC to get a better reporting requirement so there are more accurate maps.

 

Fiber is the optimal broadband technology.  There is fiber in parts of rural communities.  Do we really know where fiber is and where it doesn’t exist?  Through utility pole data surveys we could get answers.  These surveys entail getting the GPS location of each pole, identifying the pole numbers, finding out who owns the poles, and determining what is actually on the poles.

 

These utility pole data surveys help to develop efficient fiber route design by minimizing the number of poles that need to be attached to and provide the details of the amount of miles of fiber that need to be built to complete a network.

 

Recommendation #2:  Fund Utility Pole Data Surveys

 

Municipalities have not been involved in the application process for funding through New York State’s Broadband Program Office.  We find out what projects have been awarded funding when those announcements are made publicly.  Sometimes the funded locations make sense and other times high need areas are overlooked.

 

Recommendation #3:  Require companies applying for State funding to describe how municipalities were involved in the application process and require sign off in the application by the chief municipal officer.

 

The New York State Broadband Program Office is located in New York City.  The Upstate New York Towns Association had a speaker from that office, and it was a most informative meeting.  The speaker was from the New York City area and was surprised to learn how bad the lack of broadband and the underserved is in rural Upstate towns.  Remember the Upstate rural resident driving a 40 mile roundtrip to do banking.  Would that happen in New York City?

 

Recommendation #4:  Move the Broadband Program Office from New York City or establish a satellite office in an Upstate town or village so the people doing this work are close to the communities with the largest broadband needs.

 

There is emerging, promising technology such as Google’s Project Loon.  Antennas are placed inside of giant balloons which are solar powered.  The balloons are in the stratosphere and communicate with antennas on the ground which connect to local internet providers.

 

Recommendation #5:  Be involved with emerging technology.  Have staff from the New York State Broadband Program Office and New York State officials studied Google’s Project Loon and considered trying an experiment with this technology in a high need rural area?

 

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak about this very important topic.  Expanding access to high speed internet remains a task as large as rural electrification 100 years ago.  We must ensure that every home, business, school, municipality, not for profit in Upstate New York is connected with reliability at an acceptable speed.

Thank you to all who attended our recent UNYTA Program!

Public/Private Partnerships
Building Fiber Networks
 

Presented by

Chris Lynch

Director of Business Development

Matrix Design Group

 

 

Thank you to all who attended the October program

Tick-Borne Diseases in New York - What You Need to Know

Presented by

Kylie Holochak, Public Health Educator
Mel Miller, Supervising Public Health Nurse

Tioga County Public Health Department

Thank you to all who attended the June program!

Keys to Animal Adventure Park's Growth and Success

Thank you Jordan Patch for an inspiring presentation.
You have shown that an entrepreneur can be very successful in a rural area.

 
Animal Adventure Park
Thanks to all who attended the May 19th UNYTA program!
How to Become a
Clean Energy Community
 
Presented by Terry Carroll,
Clean Energy Communities Coordinator,
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Thanks to all who attended the January UNYTA program:
Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) and How It Works for the 2020 Census and American Community Survey
Presented by David Kraiker
Data Dissemination Specialist US Census Bureau
IMPORTANT STATEMENT FROM UPSTATE NY TOWNS ASSOCIATION INC.

The Upstate New York Towns Association, Inc. was formed on July 18, 2013 because there are needs and interests of towns in upstate New York that are different than the needs and interests of towns in downstate New York.

The Seasons in Upstate NY are Spectacular!

Contact Information

Upstate NY Towns
Association, Inc.

1250 Front Street, #204

Binghamton, NY 13901

Phone: 800-656-6596

Fax:   607-771-6275
Email:
upstatenytown
assoc@gmail.com

or use our
contact form

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