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Broadband in WNC Fiber FIber Act GREAT Program Haywood County Local Government NC General Assembly Skyrunner

Broadband In Haywood County

The WNC Broadband Project is happy to see ~300 locations in Haywood on the list to get broadband thanks to Skyrunner and broadband advocates in Haywood County.

Article Highlights

  • Public-private partnership between Haywood County and local internet service provider Skyrunner will soon result in broadband service for more than 300 locations in some of the county’s most underserved areas.
  • Haywood County’s rugged mountain topography can sometimes be cost-prohibitive in terms of expanding internet service, wireless or not. The $1.7 million Skyrunner project will result in a fiber-only buildout on Haywood EMC poles in Crabtree, Fines Creek, on Rush Fork Road, ending near Lake Logan.
  • Skyrunner’s cost per location is a staggering $5,600, highlighting the financial challenges of providing reliable high-speed internet to everyone in the county, however, the gigabit-capable, “future-proof” fiber can carry the capacity to serve others, once it’s complete.

Article – Milestone moment for broadband in Haywood

Smoky Mountain News

Vaillancourt, C. (2021, June 23). Milestone moment for broadband in Haywood. Smokymountainnews.com; Smoky Mountain News. https://smokymountainnews.com/news/item/31624-milestone-moment-for-broadband-in-haywood

Categories
Broadband in WNC FIber Act Local Government Municipalities NC General Assembly

Fiber Act

2020 – the Past

Legislation on the FIBER NC Act, did not pass legislation largely based on opposition by the larger incumbent telecommunications internet service providers.

What is the FIBER NC Act?

In 2020, the FIBER (Foster Infrastructure for Broadband Expansion and Resources) NC Act (HB 431) was up for vote in the NC legislature; but did not get passed.

It would have eliminated existing state restrictions and increase the authority of local governments to build out broadband infrastructure and lease the fiber to internet service providers (ISP).

It would apply to counties with 4.7 percent or less of households without broadband service (determined by the Federal Communications Commission) or that is home to a major military installation–roughly 70% of counties in the state.

Institute for Emerging Issues

Local Municipalities

How can local municipalities improve high-speed internet? Paul Meyer indicates:

the North Carolina General Assembly should make its first priority upon meeting in January passage of legislation that incorporates the principles of the FIBER NC Act and takes another substantial step in closing our digital divide.

Paul Meyer, Executive Director of the North Carolina League of Municipalities

Meyer, P. (2021, January 3). Broadband would close NC’s digital divide; Big Telecom is blocking it. The Fayetteville Observer; The Fayetteville Observer. https://www.fayobserver.com/story/opinion/columns/guest/2021/01/03/broadband-would-close-ncs-digital-divide-big-telecom-blocking/4087297001/


The WNC Broadband Project is advocating for:

  1. High-speed internet improvements
  2. Eliminating the digital divide
  3. Encouraging economic growth through education, telemedicine, and other broadband business opportunities

Will your home and business be ready for the future needs of broadband?