Highland-Bath Broadband Survey Underway

Community leaders in Bath and Highland Counties know that affordable and reliable access to the Internet is important for businesses, education, job training, healthcare, emergency services, and daily activities of residents. Together, the two counties are developing a plan to improve and expand Internet service in the area.

The counties’ project management team has hired a telecommunications consultant to lead the counties through the development of the comprehensive, strategic plan that will serve as a guide in determining the areas with the most need, and the type(s) of broadband technology that is most feasible for serving them. These efforts and the work of the consultant are being funded by a grant from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.

Last fall, the team surveyed the businesses in the counties as part of a requirement of receiving the grant. Now, the team is sending out a new survey to solicit input from everyone, not just the businesses. Surveys are being mailed to every address in the project area- residential, business, government and public facilities, and community organizations. Participating in the survey is the number one way that you can play a part in the development of the plan and improving internet and cellular services in the area. These hardcopy surveys can be returned by mail or dropped off at one of several locations identified on the survey.

However, the team encourages the use of the online survey to aid in the survey tabulation process. The web address for the survey is www.surveymonkey.com/s/BathHighlandInternet2014. Any questions about the survey may be directed to your County Administration Office – in Bath, call 540-839-7221 – in Highland, the number is 540-468-2347. The deadline for submitting the survey is October 15, 2014, and all individual responses are confidential.

Story By

Scott Smith

Scott Smith is the General Manager for Allegheny Mountain Radio and Station Coordinator and News Reporter for WVLS. Scott’s family has deep roots in Highland County. While he did not grow up here, he spent as much time as possible on the family farm, and eventually moved to Highland to continue the tradition, which he still pursues with his cousin. Unfortunately, farming doesn’t pay all the bills, so he has previously taken other jobs to support his farming hobby, including pressman/writer for The Recorder, and Ag Projects Coordinator for The Highland Center. He lives in Hightown with wife Michelle and son Ethan. In his spare time, he wishes he had more spare time, especially to ride his prized Harley-Davidson motorcycle. scott@amrmail.org

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