Leyden (MA) is steadily bringing locations online as it builds out a broadband network, reported the Greenfield Recorder. According to Andy Killeen, chair of the Leyden Municipal Light Plant and volunteer head of the town’s Broadband Department, 268 individual locations (out of 343) are up and running, with additional residents in the process of completing applications.
“When I took over the project in the middle of last year…we had anticipated the total project cost for the installation phase was going to amount to about $1.29 million,” Killeen said. “Our actual spending to date is about $1.24 million.”
The project might finish roughly $22,000 over budget, said Killeen, and the 2021 operating costs are expected to total $141,000. However, first-year potential service revenue is projected at $300,000, reported the Recorder. Service revenue is generated from 180 current customers paying $99 per month for phone and internet service and 88 customers paying $85 per month for internet only.
Regarding funding for the project, in May 2017, Leyden was awarded a Last Mile Program grant of $680,000 from the state. Last year, the FCC authorized over $10 million to improve internet service in 20 Western Massachusetts towns, with Leyden receiving $250,000 over 10 years to cover broadband expenses. Killeen noted that the project is also eligible for $120,000 in “drop cost reimbursement” from the state, covering 23 percent of that budget line item.
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