No tow­ers, no fast ser­vice

The Glengarry News - - The Opinion Page - News


Staff If South Glen­garry res­i­dents want im­proved cell­phone and broad­band In­ter­net ser­vices, they’re go­ing to have to bite the bul­let in re­gards to a needed, but of­ten­times con­tro­ver­sial, in­fra­struc­ture com­po­nent, ac­cord­ing to a lead­ing representa­tive from the East­ern On­tario Re­gional Net­work (EORN).

“The mo­bile pro­ject, the tech­nol­ogy that is go­ing to be used, it re­quires tow­ers,” Jim Pine, EORN co-lead, told town­ship coun­cil and ad­min­is­tra­tion dur­ing the June 3 reg­u­lar coun­cil meet­ing.

“We’re be­ing very upfront with every­body when we talk about this. This is about tow­ers and broad­cast­ing off those tow­ers.”

Mr. Pine, who is also the CAO of Hast­ings County, em­pathized with coun­cil, point­ing out that the topic of cell­phone tow­ers is some­times a dif­fi­cult one to stick­han­dle around.

“It’s al­ways, or some­times, an is­sue, par­tic­u­larly for lo­cal mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties, in terms of the sit­ing of the tow­ers,” he said.

“We’re happy to work with you when we get to that stage, if there are is­sues.”

Mr. Pine, along with Lisa Sev­er­son, EORN com­mu­ni­ca­tions/stake­holder re­la­tions of­fi­cer, ap­peared be­fore coun­cil to thank them for sup­port­ing EORN’s efforts over the past decade, as well as to pro­vide an update on the pro­posed $213 mil­lion pub­lic-pri­vate part­ner­ship ini­tia­tive to im­prove mo­bile and In­ter­net ser­vices through­out East­ern On­tario an­nounced last June.

EORN re­ceived $71 mil­lion from the prov­ince last month to help de­fray the to­tal cost of the pro­ject, while all mem­bers of the East­ern On­tario War­dens’ Cau­cus (EOWC) and most mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties within the East­ern On­tario May­ors’ Cau­cus (EOMC) have com­mit­ted to con­tribut­ing to the $10 mil­lion mu­nic­i­pal share.

Mr. Pine said he is op­ti­mistic that the fed­eral gov­ern­ment will also pony up $71 mil­lion to­wards the pro­ject.

Mo­bile car­ri­ers, who will be se­lected through a com­pet­i­tive bid­ding process, are ex­pected to pro

“We’re be­ing upfront with every­body when we talk about this. This is about tow­ers and broad­cast­ing off those tow­ers.”

vide the bal­ance of the fund­ing ($61 mil­lion).

Ms. Sev­er­son ex­plained that she and Mr. Pine had other busi­ness in South Glen­garry besides their pre­sen­ta­tion to coun­cil.

“We are meet­ing a group from Tree Haven (Road), here (June 5), with the Bell representa­tive, just to discuss why there are (In­ter­net ser­vice) is­sues there, and some of the pos­si­ble so­lu­tions that might be able to take place,” she said.

“I think we’ll have a good meet­ing.”

Mem­bers of more than 30 house­holds along Tree Haven Road pe­ti­tioned South Glen­garry coun­cil last fall, seek­ing mu­nic­i­pal sup­port in their bat­tle for im­proved high-speed In­ter­net ser­vice in their neigh­bour­hood.


RIB­BON CUT­TING: South Glen­garry’s tourism in­for­ma­tion booth/art gallery cel­e­brated its grand open­ing with a rib­bon cut­ting cer­e­mony at the Rob McIntosh build­ing in South Lan­caster on Mon­day morn­ing. Shown are Kathi Le­Gault (fea­tured artist), Rob McIntosh, Mayor Frank Prevost, Mikayla Elliott, Nick Seguin (SDG coun­ties representa­tive), Shauna Baggs (Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment and Tourism Co­or­di­na­tor), artists Dar­lene Var­ley, Sylvie Labrecque, Jacqueline Mil­ner, summer stu­dent Cal­lum Robert­son, Deputy-Mayor Lyle War­den, Coun­cil­lor Stephanie Ja­worski.

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