The Sioux Bulletin, Aug 25 issue carried a front page news story with this same title. This article is a story about Pickle Lake, a small town in Northwestern Ontario, that wanted broadband and went out to find the partners needed to make it happen with them.
Norcom had 13 customers when this project started. Based on this usage they were not able to invest in upgrading their network to handle two-way data. Now as a partner with the town, they have over 50 customers and the local municipality (town office) is handling the internet portion. The town is paying Nocom a portion of their profits from the internet side of the network.
From the Sioux Bulletin article, the town is now on-line and feeling good about their experience. K-Net continues to support their requirements through the helpdesk and by providing the connectivity to the network. They can now easily be included in the NORTH Network for telehealth applications through this connection.
This story is one of those win-win situations for everyone involved. The town council met with K-Net staff (Dan and Adi) to discuss their options for getting a broadband connection in place. Dan acted in an advisory capacity when they negotiated their deal with Norcom (the local/regional cable company). The town paid for their router, the upgrade for the cable system, the installation of the T1 service and the monthly charges with their own dollars along with a contribution from FedNor to start the work. K-Net set up the equipment requirements based on the same system / model used in each of the KO First Nations under the Industry Canada Smart Communities project.Carl Seibel from FedNor worked with the community over the years to help facilitate this development. The local leadership decided to move ahead making this development a community priority. They invested their own dollars from their reserve as well as their time in developing this resource. What is really nice to see is how they are now planning to use their community network to develop additonal services (ie telehealth).
With this investment from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, the town is now able to once again develop their reserve fund. A very positive success story for everyone involved!!