|Member||Title||Phone||Term Start||Term End|
Michael A. Perkins II
Maureen L. Tumenas
Meeting times: As Needed
|Term: Appointed by the Selectboard for 1 year|
The Cummington Municipal Light Plant(MLP), has received the initial payment of the $390,000 to begin the make ready process to build the town’s broadband network. We have signed a contract with Whip City of Westfield Gas and Electric, (WG&E). Monday September 11, the MLP board will meet with WG&E in Cummington, for the official kick off and to begin the town pole survey. So when you see workers on the roads of Cummington or coming up your driveway, welcome them as we are finally off and running! Allan Douglas, is the town's MLP manager, and may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At our meeting on March 30, 2017, we voted to pursue building a town network, pursuing grant money available through MA HUD, and contracting with Westfield Gas and Electric/Whip City Fiber to build the network.
This decision was based on:
town ownership of the network infrastructure
ability to provide drops(connection) to all households
possibility of reduced pricing through networking with Wired West
Cummington has been awarded a grant of $840,000 from Mass EOHED (Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development). We have received the initial outlay of $390,000 to begin the design and engineering process.
Cummington MLP board has contracted with Westfield/ Whip City. It is anticipated that the 70% of the build would be paid for by the town and 30% would be funded by the construction grant from the state.
Whip City has proposed offering 1 Gigabit tier of service for internet. They are negotiating with Wired West to handle operations for a regional system of town owned networks. This would help decrease the cost and regionalization would positively affect redundancy in the network. These prices and tiers are all being negotiated.
Operations would be paid for by subscribers when the network is built and homes are hooked up. The price would need to cover all ongoing expenses and cover depreciation and debt service. As all of this is in negotiation at this point, we cannot give concrete figures, but expect the subscribers to pay less than $100/month.
Billed to subscribers: At the Wired West meeting in January, we calculated that we would need to add approximately $11-17 a month to the subscriber fee, dependent on take rate and final pricing by the ISP, to cover a depreciation reserve of $37,388. Infrastructure replacement-depreciation (minimum 3% of build-fiber lasts 20+years, electronics 7 years).
Raise and Appropriate: The debt service could be covered by the tax rate, as we view this as an important utility for our town. Using the latest figures from Wired West the FY22 Debt Service would be 97, 422. This would equal an approximate increase of 0.765/1000 on the tax rate or an average household increase of $15/month. Alternatively, some of the cost could be added to the monthly bill of each subscriber. This is still under discussion.
Kickoff Meeting with Westfield Gas and Electric
Start design and engineering process
Continue communication and meetings with neighboring hilltowns