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Essex Council to talk internet strategy

Essex Council received and supported correspondence from the Township of Armour that noted at its meeting held on April 28, 2020, the Council of the Township of Armour passed a resolution supporting its Councillor Rod Ward’s letter regarding the need to make substantial investments in high-speed internet connectivity in the rural areas of Ontario.

  Councillor Sherry Bondy made a second motion that Council host a special meeting about the issue, in the near future. The motion passed.

  CAO Chris Nepszy said Council has already give Administration direction to develop an internet strategy through the Council term plan He said the Town is working with anyone who knocks at the door and then some. He said he has reached out to some.

  He said the SouthWestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) option is in motion. A presentation was made about this option to Council in October of 2018. He hopes to have an update with the SWIFT and the CRTC RFP in the next month or so.

  Deputy Mayor Richard Meloche said at the County Council level, SWIFT is being worked with as well. He said not a lot of County Council members are really pleased with the speed it is moving. It is quite often a topic of conversation.

  SWIFT will lay the larger network and smaller providers will tap into it and bring it to homes, Meloche said.

  Councillor Chris Vander Doelen said he has spent a lot of time on the issue. The Town needs to drive a deal to get internet to backroads as well. He said there needs to be more than one company in order to create competition.

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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