SENECA - A survey of Crawford County residents assessing their current internet access and interest in improved access was mailed last week. The survey, commissioned by 3C Co-op (Crawford County Communications Cooperative), is being conducted by the University of Wisconsin-River Falls’ Survey Research Center.
Mailed to 1,157 randomly selected residents living in the rural portions of Crawford County, the survey targets those who do not have access to Broadband.
Envelopes will have a label that reads ‘RURAL CRAWFORD COUNTY INTERNET BROADBAND SURVEY.’ Please watch for this in your mail, complete the survey, and return it in the enclosed postage-paid and self-addressed envelope. Information for completing online is available with the mailed survey.
The survey and its results are a requirement for obtaining funding from the USDA’s Rural Utility Service (RUS). This funding is required to build the fiber optic infrastructure throughout 3C’s service area. The projected cost of this project is $18,898,152.
“It is important that people complete this survey,” 3C’s Chairperson Jay McCloskey explained. “The more people that respond, the more accurate the results, and a high percentage of respondents will further strengthen our position for obtaining the required funding.”
3C Co-op has identified 3,605 households, farms and businesses in the County that do not have access to broadband internet, all of which would be eligible to become members of the 3C Co-op. These potential members are in all areas of the county that are not served by Richland-Grant Telephone Cooperative or Vernon Communications. They are also not residents of the City of Prairie du Chien, which has access to broadband.
Accurate survey results require mailing to the approximately 30 percent that were randomly selected, not to all affected residents. A mailing is required for statistical accuracy, and because everyone does not have sufficient internet or computer access for them to complete an online survey.
An online survey will also become available, a few weeks after the mailing, for anyone who did not receive the survey in the mail. Info on accessing this will be published as soon as it is available. These additional results will provide further evidence supporting residents’ needs for, and interest in, obtaining Fiber To The Home (FTTH) service.
The 3C Co-op’s fiber optic infrastructure would provide Fiber To The Home (FTTH) for all of its members. The minimum speed offered would be 25 mgb download and 25 mgb upload. Speeds up to 1 Gigabit (1,000 mgb) upload and download would be available, along with telephone service (members can keep their current phone number), and television/movie/entertainment.
3C’s Gigabit FTTH Project will result in Crawford County having high-speed internet service that’s competitive with neighboring communities.
Harriet Behar, a 3C Board Member At Large, emphasizes the importance of having access to high-speed internet.
“Bringing rural Crawford County into the 21st century with high speed internet greatly expands educational opportunities for kindergarten through post graduate students, employment opportunities for telecommuting and good paying jobs, connectivity with health care providers, access to entertainment/news as well as interaction with family and friends,” Behar said.
Email Info@3C.Coop for information about how you can contribute to the success of this project, or call 608-735-4322 (608-735-4 3C Co-op).