Bid for better broadband

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The Waikato District Council is preparing a bid for additional Government funding to expand ultrafast broadband in its communities.

It’s seeking information from Waikato residents about their broadband access and use to help mount the case.

A short, online survey is open here until June 19 for residents and community groups.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment recently announced it would spend an additional $360 million to extend its two flagship broadband initiatives – Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) and Rural Broadband Initiative – and establish a new initiative to expand mobile coverage.

Waikato district Economic Development Manager Clive Morgan said a list of towns, and the order of rollout, would be determined following a competitive bid process.

“The bid process takes into account the cost of logistics including new infrastructure, actual customer demand, as well as the level of assistance from local authorities and their communities.”

He said to ensure the council presented a comprehensive case for its communities to be included on the list the council needed a better understanding of how communities access, and use, the internet.

“We’re working on a bid to ensure a portion of the new funding comes to communities in Waikato district but we need help from residents. We need to get some information from residents and their communities, about their broadband use and access.

“To do this we’ve developed a brief, five question survey which we’d like people to share with as many networks as they can in the community – schools, churches, sport clubs, dance groups, business networks, community hubs, playgroups – anyone that can provide feedback.”

The survey will be open until Friday, June 19 and is available through this Survey Monkey link.

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