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Eden says Spectrum has come a long way in providing town's internet service

Town of Eden

Every house in the Town of Eden is near an internet line and all but a few are connected. This is especially in the age of COVID, to ensure students can learn remotely. But as Eden negotiates a new franchise agreement with cable provider Spectrum, the town's supervisor  says improvements can be made.

The town has been working closely with Spectrum over how the system works for the last three years, as negotiations continued. Supervisor Melissa Hartman said service has improved considerably since two years ago, when only two-thirds of homes had a cable line available. Still, a few dozen still don’t have service, whether because they can’t afford it or the house is too far back from the road.

Hartman said she knew service was weak.

"From the Town Hall, I could tell you every day in the first few years of my supervisor position, around 2 o’clock when the kids were let out, everything would slow down. And as we talked to residents when we were doing our Master Plan, that’s exactly what they said," Hartman said. "So Spectrum came in and they started doing testing on a lot of the different areas around town to monitor that and they have made significant adjustments."

Hartman said that includes optical fiber service for businesses and potential industrial development. She said the utility also has been working individually with homeowners considered too far from the road to work something out.

The supervisor said the company is improving its public image.

"Post-pandemic, when we were in the middle of the shutdown, that was a big test and I think that overall, our system held up very well," she said, "and in areas that we were getting complaints, calls saying during a certain time I’m having trouble, they put monitoring on it and increased the capacity. So they’ve worked very well with our town."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
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