Open Access Debate and Broadband Awards Highlight Final Day

Keystone, Colorado – Today the region and nation’s broadband leaders gathered for the final day of the sixth annual Mountain Connect Conference, with highlights available online at on Mountain Connect’s Twitter Feed. Sessions including “The Internet of Things,” “FirstNet Colorado,” “Public Sector Broadband Development Panel,” and a lively “Open Access Debate” were all live streamed across the country. These streams are still available at The day’s opening remarks from Diane Mitsch Bush, Colorado State House of Representatives, are also available online.

“The importance of broadband is escalating and extremely important to my constituents and myself, said Colorado State House Representative Diane Mitsch Bush; her district is comprised of two mountain counties: Eagle and Routt. “We have fragmented service now which means lost economic opportunities for existing and potential new businesses, diminished educational opportunities from preschool through college, as well as serving as a barrier to advanced medical delivery and telehealth opportunities – critical for a region like ours that is spread out.  The state of broadband in far too many Colorado communities is creating real safety issues, as emergency services in many communities don’t have redundant coverage should an outage occur – which happened twice last year. We have to find partnerships to help rural Colorado, especially in our mountain countries, achieve the broadband we all need.”

Also highlighting the day included Mountain Connect’s annual Broadband Awards, given this year to “Community of the Year,” Rio Blanco and to SECOM for “Provider of the Year.”

As part of the Northwest Colorado Regional Broadband Strategic Plan effort, Rio Blanco County identified that broadband service in the County was inadequate to sustain 21st century economic development. Through 2014 and into 2015, the County determined it would build a fiber to the premises network in its two population centers (Meeker and Rangley) and a shared fixed wireless solution designed to reach all other addresses in the county. The project begins serving its first customers this month.

mc 2016 blake mobley

Blake Mobley, Rio Blanco

“This award is a great honor that I’m humbled by,” said Blake Mobley, IT Director of Rio Blanco County. “Most of all, this award is a reflection of all of the support we’ve received from a lot of great partners including NWCCOG, Colorado OIT, Colorado Fiber Community, and Mid-States Consultants. Above all, our county’s commissioners who have funded this project and partnered with Colorado Department of Local Affairs for additional funding to make this project a reality.”

The provider of the year, SECOM has been providing competitive and innovative data transport solutions, based on high-speed fiber optic lines and fixed wireless equipment to governmental entities, businesses and residences since 1998. SECOM pioneered a fully integrated “metro” Ethernet platform, which provides access to subscribers on the same type of interface that a local area network uses and avoids extra WAN equipment. As more electric cooperatives and local governments ponder and/or launch broadband service offerings, SECOM is increasingly sought after to provide its testimonial and expertise.

This year’s conference was the most attended yet as broadband planning and building activity has never been higher. Next year’s conference will be in June, 2017. 

For More Information: 
Doug Adams
 on behalf of Mountain Connect
The Think Agency

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