Councilor Lederman Holds Committee Meeting for Update on Municipal Fiber Internet Study
At-Large City Councilor Jesse Lederman, Chairman of the City Council’s Maintenance & Development Committee, held a Committee Meeting on Thursday to receive an update on the city’s planned study of a Municipal Fiber Internet Option for Springfield residents and businesses.
The Committee heard testimony from Andrew Doty, Chief Information Officer of the City of Springfield, who confirmed the study will commence shortly with a state contracted consultancy organization that specializes in the logistics of municipal fiber internet.
“Residents in the City of Springfield are sick and tired of being nickel and dimed when it comes to internet access, and we know that the internet has become an essential utility for residents and businesses in our community,” said Councilor Lederman, “I am glad that this study is moving forward and will help develop the blueprint for how we can build a fiber internet option to provide affordable, reliable, and high-speed internet services to residents and businesses across the City of Springfield.”
The study is expected to last 2-3 months and will provide insight into both the logistics of the prospective network’s infrastructure and finances, including assessing how many households and businesses would potentially sign on for service and at what rate.
Councilor Lederman began advocating for the City of Springfield to explore construction of a municipal fiber internet option during the COVID-19 pandemic as individuals across communities expressed concern with the cost and services of existing providers, and worked together with Councilors in surrounding communities to gather additional information, creating an informal caucus of local Councilors called “Western Mass Official for Municipal Internet."
Together the Councilors hosted a well attended Virtual Town Hall Meeting with topic experts in 2021 and introduced coordinated resolutions in their City Council’s committing to assessing the feasibility of municipal internet options.
Councilor Lederman will hold a Maintenance and Development Committee Meeting to review the study upon its conclusion and discuss next steps.