Because of the inaccurate data, national providers, state and federal regulators are under the
mistaken impression that reliable, high-speed broadband service is consistently available and
reliable in all corners of the County. Our citizens tell us otherwise. For several years,
through our comment form at the bottom of this web page as well as through other sources, the
public has had the opportunity to report difficulties with high-speed internet to this
Department. A countless number of residents have reported they either don’t have access, their
access is unreliable, or is too expensive.
In light of these continued reports and the static efforts of private-sector providers to
address our county’s gaps in coverage, the County and its strategic stakeholders are moving
aggressively to improve and expand broadband service in order to achieve universal, affordable
access for all.
A FOUR-PHASE PLAN
The intended purpose of the Digital Inclusion Strategy is to ensure all area
and communities have access to affordable and reliable broadband internet service,
and digital literacy training.
This four-phased plan includes ...
Collect the necessary data to inform our decision-making to effectively address gaps in
access, affordability, and digital literacy.
- Refine broadband-availability maps
- Improve understanding of how residents use broadband and what they need
- Improve understanding of barriers to broadband access by both connected users
and those currently without high-speed internet
By utilizing data from Phase I, develop a robust plan defining the actions necessary to
address gaps in access, affordability, and digital literacy throughout the County.
- Prepare broadband infrastructure plans that address physical access issues
- Develop initiatives that address cost and equipment problems preventing
residents from accessing broadband
- Develop digital literacy public outreach and education initiatives for residents
- Develop strategies to overcome regulatory hurdles inhibiting the expansion of
reliable and affordable broadband infrastructure
INTERMEDIARY SOLUTIONS DEPLOYMENT
Put into motion Phase II plans to ensure Ottawa County deploys the infrastructure and
support programming necessary to achieve universal, affordable broadband access for
- Through a public-private partnership, build broadband infrastructure to connect
areas of County lacking reliable and affordable high-speed internet
- Connect with local partners to help subsidize, as needed, the cost of broadband
access for those unable to afford it
- Deploy digital literacy programs
Monitor and address ongoing and evolving needs among residents and businesses to ensure they
have access to the broadband infrastructure needed to compete today and tomorrow.
- Survey/evaluate the public at least every three years to gauge broadband use and
anticipate future needs
- Continue developing solutions to ensure County offers the most robust
infrastructure and programming needed for residents and business to thrive into
Data Collection Steering Committee Members
Phase I Funding Partners
As part of Phase I of the Digital Inclusion Strategy, Ottawa County has solicited
from experienced vendors to develop a method for comprehensive data collection and
to determine current status and future needs of broadband service.
Once data is collected and residents are surveyed, detailed and accurate maps will
created. With better, accurate data and maps, we can then move to Phase 2 of the