Moffat County broadband plan details strengths, threats to implentation

Craig Daily Press Staff Report

— The long-anticipated Moffat County Strategic Broadband Plan was officially released this week, detailing options for how move forward with broadband implementation in the county.

The study, carried out by NEO Connect based in Glenwood Springs, examined existing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to broadband development. The report will be used to weigh options and determine an approach; cost and timeline have yet to be defined.

At a cost of $48,000, the report was funded by a grant from the Department of Local Affairs, City of Craig, Moffat County and local partners.

Broadband efforts have been led thus far by committee co-chairs Audrey Danner and Terry Carwile. However, the City of Craig, Moffat County and Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership have agreed to take the lead on continued efforts, said CMEDP Executive Director Michelle Balleck.

“We’re going to continue to meet with partners to be involved in the process,” Balleck said “We’re taking all the information from the plan and deciding how that can work most feasibly for our community.”

Existing strengths named in the report highlight well-established partnerships and cooperation between local government, key anchor institutions and businesses that have already been established, as well as state support for establishing broadband in rural Colorado.

The primary weakness named was high capital costs to upgrade infrastructure. The greatest threat was listed as determining who will implement the plan, including who will provide funding, oversight, implementation and operation of the network.

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