Broadband Committee

Committee Members               


MaryEllen Kennedy - Chairperson

Sue Cloutier

Amy Fagin

Hugh Field

Ron Lunn

Tony Palmieri

Betsy Pelz

Kathy Soule-Regine




Stowell Bldg.

19 South Main Street

New Salem, MA 01355


Phone:  (978) 544-6437



Meeting Schedule

As Posted

Broadband Committee Update

As of April 4 we are 76% of the way to our WiredWest Fiber Campaign sign up goal!  Below is some additional information about the project.  An important mailing with more details will be sent out next week.

A Few Questions and Answers for the New Salem/WiredWest Broadband Project


Why do I need to sign up now?
We need a minimum of 40% of households to sign up to be part of the network.
Towns with the most subscribers are more likely to be built first (with completion as early as 2017) so it is critical to get as many people as possible to sign up now. Our goal is 60% of households.

How will this project be financed?
Towns that are part of the WiredWest network and a $40 million State of Massachusetts grant will fund this project.


How much will my taxes increase?
The tax increase could gradually rise to a maximum of $17 per month (about $204 per year) for an average single family home ($205,439). However, the tax increase could be zero because WiredWest expects to be able to return revenue to the town from monthly subscriptions that could cover all or part of the town’s debt.

Many households will save on telephone, Internet and television bills offsetting any tax increase.


Inline image 2

For the average household in

this example, we expect:

Savings of $34 per month or over $400 per year.

Visit our websites at www.newsalem-massachusetts.org or www.wiredwest.net for more information.
See the calculator tool to determine how this project affects your household costs.


Why are we using taxpayer dollars for this? Shouldn't a private company cover the costs?
New Salem has relatively few households and low population density.
Rural wiring costs are high and for a for-profit commercial Internet provider the expense has been too high.
Over the last 20 years, various companies have declined requests to deliver broadband Internet to us.
New Salem joined WiredWest because our town has been unable to get reliable and fast Internet access.


I don't use computers or the Internet. Why should I care about broadband?
Even if you don't use the Internet yourself, there are compelling reasons to support the plan:


1. Home value.  Many of our residents have already encountered extreme difficulty selling or renting their homes because there are few people who are willing to move to an area that lacks adequate Internet service. When it's time to sell your home, you will get upwards of 20% less for your home if high-speed Internet is not available1


2. Infrastructure for all, now and in the future. The fiber-optic cable and network adds value to the town just as a fine library, school, and municipal services police, fire, and highway add value. Taxpayer support of infrastructure is essential.


3. Sustaining community. If high speed Internet is not available to residents of the town, the complexion of the town will change. Young people will move away. Workers who want to telecommute will not live here. New Salem will not grow in vitality. This has happened to other towns when broadband is unavailable.


1Source: The Guardian [New York] 1 Mar. 2014: "Fast broadband now considered vital by increasing numbers of homebuyers." Online. Estimate confirmed by professional local realtors at Jones Realty, Amherst, Massachusetts.


Sign up for WiredWest and help make New Salem a Fiber Town. Sign me up!

If you would like to join the WiredWest Fiber Town campaign by mailing in a check for your $49 deposit, please use the form and envelope included in the mailing you received last week or you can download, complete and mail the sign up form below to the address indicated. We ask that you read the terms carefully.

Sign Up Form

Mail to:
Old Courthouse
99 Main Street
Northampton, MA 01060

Use our Calculator Tool to determine how this project affects your own household costs.


NEW - WiredWest FAQs

Muni Networks excellent FAQ