Greene County town supervisors have long been out of touch when it comes to broadband service in their communities. Nowhere is this more evident than in an article in today’s Catskill Daily Mail, in which Durham Town Supervisor William Carr Jr. is quoted as saying “We have decent coverage”.
What does Supervisor Carr consider to be “decent”? The fact the 58% of the roads in his town—representing, he says, 70% of the population—have access to cable broadband coverage. He gleaned this fact from a visit to the offices of Mid-Hudson Cabelevision in Catskill, where they “were happy to show me site maps” detailing the town’s coverage. Mid-Hudson Cablevision is the same firm that declined over $3 million in Federal stimulus money to expand broadband coverage in the area, citing increased labor costs, among other considerations.
Carr’s “decent coverage” attitude is typical of town officials throughout the county, where coverage is inadequate to begin with and little effort is made to press Mid-Hudson Cablevision or other providers to do better. Concerned Citizens for Better Broadband, led by Kathleen Whitley-Harm of Freehold and Rosemary O’Brien of Oak Hill, have been working for years now to improve broadband service in the county.
However, Supervisor Carr’s misplaced optimism in Durham is a sign of how far there still is to go. As Ms. Whitley-Harm notes, “Our mission has always been 100% broadband coverage for everyone in Greene County, and we believe our elected leaders should be working in the best interests of their communities by doing everything in their power to ensure all residents have equal access”. We at BlueInGreene could not agree more. We simply must do better.
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