February 8, 2018

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The Review-Mirror February 8, 2018 – 16 Westport Mayor Robin Jones and Eastern Ontario Wardens Caucus (EOWC) Chair has a new focus this year with the wardens' pushing for expanded cel- lular networks and increased broadband. "That is our number one priority-without that people won't move into a rural community," said Jones. The Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) a non-profit cre- ated by the Eastern Ontario Wardens' Caucus, has already improved con- nectivity in the region with a $260 million network funded by the federal, provincial and municipal governments and the pri- vate sector service providers. The project helped to improve fixed broadband access to nearly 90 per cent of Eastern Ontario. The new project could improve speed and close the gaps of cellular cover- age which will be needed for public safety commu- nication. "One of the changes the Ministry of Health wants to implement is an improved ambulance dis- patching system which would help them triage and make some decision at the first point of contact. It depends on connectivity," she said. EORN envisions a pub- lic-private project which could be built in phases to respond to changes in the marketplace and evolving technology. Including the PSBN option saves $47 million as compared to building it separately. More connectivity is also essential to remain competitive with neigh- boring regions. "We know the connec- tivity in Eastern Ontario is falling well behind Que- bec and New York State which is a problem for the people of Eastern Ontario. You can go to Quebec and get double the speed. All the economic develop- ment drivers depend on connectivity," said Jones. Wardens' caucus pushing to fill in connectivity gaps It was Man vs. Machine at Seeley's Bay's Frost Fest when teams got to pull a pumper truck down Stanton Street on Saturday afternoon. The province announced one-time Main Street Improvement pro- gram for rural municipali- ties at last month's Rural Ontario Municipal Associ- ation conference. The funding, from the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs will be allocated to munic- ipalities based on popula- tion size, using the most recent data from the 2016 Statistics Canada Census of Population. The formula also includes an adjustment for municipalities that have fewer than 25,000 resi- dents. Some local allocations: Gananoque, $40,413 Perth, $41,066 Smiths Falls, $43,480 Athens, $38,596 Leeds and the Thousand Islands, $44,061.; Rideau Lakes, $44,790 South Frontenac, $51,837 Tay Valley, $40,842 Westport, $36,543. Rural municipalities to receive 'Main Street' grants 4 Our 1 th Edit e of Skate The Lak ion t , 2018 50K Relay t Sa urd 100K Open 4 Our 1 th Edit ay d 7, b 1 Fe 2 T al on i at Invit all to n skat of Skate ion t 8 201 ur To ers Su K e e The Lak 8 b 1 ay Fe nd , 5 & 25 , 10K K, & 5K Kids 1K R KIDS C TRE G CURLIN T EA EATS TO RIDES H IG SLE WORK FIRE BLIC S PU S KS E STO IC SKATE OCK k th c w.skat he te for i webs he STL port elake teth s: l tai r de om d.c lan

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