NYS Looking for public’s help with broadband internet access in Chenango County

NORWICH, N.Y (WBNG) — In today’s age, it’s hard to imagine life without the internet.

However, for some, it’s a harsh reality that was faced primarily during the pandemic while many were working from home.

Now, New York State is looking for the public’s help in Chenango County to help fix that issue.

“New York State is really pushing for a broadband assessment, so we’re really encouraging people to do is take that assessment. Not only do we need to know where broadband is still working, but it will help the state when they are disbursing funds and figuring out where the most ‘bang for your buck’ will really be,” said the Director of Planning for Chenango County Shane Butler.

The state is looking to conduct a survey among residents in the area, Butler says this will create a map.

“What we want people to do is fill out that survey whether you have good Internet or not, because even if you don’t fill out that survey, it leaves us to figure out if you do have good internet or not. We really encourage everyone to fill it out no matter what,” he said.

Butler said by filling out the survey online, or on paper, it will not only help the person filling out the questions but the community at large.

“We really want to use this data to apply for additional grants to help those people who don’t have broadband. Not only is broadband essential for work, school, (and) all of that, but also we’ve had realtors tell us that the market value of some homes can increase by tens of thousands of dollars which is the availability of the internet,” said Butler.

For those who do not have the internet at all, they can call 1-855-692-2627 and request a paper version according to Butler. For those with internet that would like to participate, Butler says there is a questionnaire and a speed test that can be completed. To find out more regarding this survey you can visit their website here.

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