May Infrastructure: Climate Action and Broadband

At its meeting in May, the Infrastructure Committee discussed Cape Cod Commission’s Climate Action Plan. This plan, which was developed through a process including engagement with stakeholders, was made available to the public in April and can be read at the Cape Cod Commission website.

The plan is open for public comment until May 24. The Committee discussed submitting a comment underscoring the need for funds supporting broadband when funds become available. One of the functions of the Infrastructure Committee is to look at issues where a public comment is appropriate or has been requested. If the consensus of the committee is in favor of making a comment, as this was, the drafted comment is forwarded to the Board for review and approval.

Comments approved by the Board are posted to the website.

Offshore wind
It was reported that Vineyard Wind has made significant progress on their project and has been approved by the Biden Administration. Vineyard Wind has selected Open Cape as their internet partner and provider. Previously, the Tech Council filed a comment on Vineyard Wind’s Economic Impact Report for the Vineyard Connector 2 and follows the project with interest.

Mayflower Wind has proposed a project to be sited roughly between the two Vineyard Wind sites. They are at a much earlier stage in the regulatory process than the Vineyard Wind projects.

Broadband
A committee member attended an Emergency Broadband Benefit presentation and circulated the presentation from that meeting.The Emergency Broadband Benefit offers eligible customers $50 a month off their broadband bill, with potential for discounts on hardware.

Members see a once-in-a-generation opportunity in terms of federal and state stimulus packages, with some of it is directed towards broadband. The committee discussed what the Tech Council should be doing as an organization to ensure towns on the Cape have access to funds and know what to do with them. Committee members are focused on getting funding passed through the House and Senate, as well as the rules for distribution of those funds.

Broadband resources are available on the Tech Council’s website.

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