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.
For the average
this example, we
Savings of $34 per month or over $400 per year.
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
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,