The St George CDC is under contract with Spectrum Communications to expand their broadband network to approximately 190 unserved residences in Saint George. The project is scheduled for completion by November 2022.

Updated August 29, 2022

Summary of recent updates:
• New FAQ regarding underground service – scroll to the bottom of the page

Project Status

100% FUNDED!!

Thank you to everyone who supported our fundraising efforts! We met our goal to raise $44,000 by February 28, 2022. Your commitment to our project will make it a successful one. 

 

PERMITTINGINFRASTRUCTURE

Starting the last week in August and early September, Spectrum will begin preparation for installing new cable lines in areas where CMP permits are complete. Remaining permits are expected to be to be complete by mid to late September. As far as we can tell by the ambiguous updates we receive, the project is still on schedule.

Public Announcement

November 3, 2021

The Broadband Committee of the St George Community Development Corporation is happy to share the news that we  signed the contract last week with Spectrum Communications (a Charter Communications brand) to make broadband available to approximately 190 residences. This is a big milestone in this project. We know you’ve been waiting, and have a lot of questions;  below we’ll try to answer many of them. 

When will I have broadband? 

The contract states that the project will be complete within 12 months or by the end of October 2022. CMP is responsible for the first phase, which is getting the utility poles ready. We’ll keep you updated on their progress. 

What will it cost me to get service to my home?

Spectrum has a standard hookup fee for new service on homes closer than 250 feet from the nearest available connection. Homes further than that may incur additional connection fees (but not always).  It will be up to each homeowner to contract with Spectrum for access and service.

What are the available services and pricing through Spectrum?

This is the current rate information from Spectrum (as of October 2021).

Internet Speed *

Price / month **

Plan name

100/10

$49.99

Spectrum Internet

400/20

$69.99

Spectrum Internet Ultra

940/35

$109.99

Spectrum Internet Gig

  * Measured in Mbps. Download speed / Upload speed.
** Prices do not include fees. Fees may vary. 

What other services are available through Spectrum? How much do they cost?

Please contact Spectrum for pricing on non-internet related services or service packages. At this time, they offer internet, cable TV and phone service. 

What is the network infrastructure?

Spectrum will build on their combination fiber/coaxial network. It is capable of speeds approaching 1GB for internet. They offer multiple plans for cable and internet service all above minimum acceptable broadband speeds, including low-income internet assistance for qualifying households.

Can seasonal residents suspend service while they’re away?

According to the Spectrum website, “Seasonal Status lets you put your Spectrum TV, Internet and Voice services on hold for a low monthly fee, avoiding the hassle of canceling and then reinstalling service. Seasonal Status may not be available for all services, and services included in Spectrum Community Solutions accounts aren’t eligible for seasonal status.”

How can I help?

There is still $44,000 to be raised.  In late August we applied to Knox County to receive some of the American Rescue Plan funding they received. If that grant isn’t successful we’ll be reaching out to ask you for a contribution to fund that gap. We expect the County to make a decision in November.

If the grant is denied we will be asking residents who are served by this project to make a contribution and help us raise the needed $44,000. St George Community Development Corporation is the fiscal sponsor for this project.

Will my contribution be tax deductible?

As a resident who directly benefits from the new service, per IRS guidelines your financial contribution would not be tax deductible

Project Background 

Signing this contract was the culmination of more than two years of work and 800 citizen volunteer hours by the committee to identify “last mile” needs—homes outside an internet service provider’s network that are often hard to reach. Our work included conducting a physical audit of all roads and residences in St George to identify gaps in broadband service. Through this and other community outreach efforts, we found that over 85% of St George has access to Spectrum’s broadband service, leaving a service gap of 15%. We presented our audit results to several local Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to get their feedback on how to fill in that service gap. With that input, we concluded that Spectrum is best positioned to affordably complete the broadband network on the St George peninsula.

You may recall that we applied for and received a grant from the ConnectME Authority in the spring. Since then Spectrum has offered to provide the funds we would have received from the grant to simplify execution of the project.

Project Budget

$44,000 – Funds to be raised by 2/28/22
$481,417 – Spectrum partner contribution (88.6%)
$8,000 – Maine Community Foundation Grant
$10,000 – Town of St George Commitment 
———————
$543,417 – TOTAL

Questions

If you have questions that you’d like to ask in person, John, Van and Jeff (of the Connect St George broadband committee) host a weekly TechTime session every Thursday from 4-5:30pm at the Jackson Memorial Library in Tenants Harbor. They can help with broadband questions and anything else technology related.

For other questions, please reach out to one of us, or the St George Community Development Corporation. To stay up to date, please share your email address with stgeorgeaudit@gmail.com. 

Frequent Questions

What’s the best way to stay abreast of the project status?
  • Check this webpage, we’ll keep it up to date
  • Ask a broadband committee member (names at the top of the page)
  • Go to the Jackson Memorial Library on Thursday afternoon at 4pm for TechTime. Committee members John, Van and Jeff can answer any questions about the project, your computer, phone and a surprising number of other subjects. 
  • Ask Alane at the CDC. She’s also a wealth of information.
  • DO NOT CALL SPECTRUM.  Service representatives at Spectrum will not have information about our project.
When can I call Spectrum to get service?

Expected network rollout is in late October or early November 2022. After Spectrum finishes building network they will add all new service addresses to their system. Only after they have done that will their service representatives recognize that your residence is available for service.

How do I communicate installation instructions to Spectrum?

After the network is complete, call Spectrum to arrange for service installation.

Can I pre-subscribe for Spectrum service?

No. You can subscribe only after the network is complete or we alert you otherwise.

I have underground service. What do I need to know?
(
summarized from communication with Spectrum)

For underground service, Spectrum requires that the customer provide the pathway (conduit) with a pull string. Provided this requirement is met, installers will pull the service drop in to the customers home.

With new underground conduits, the size and distance to pull stations can vary. Spectrum’s standard depth is 18-36” and they will normally ask for a 2” conduit sweeping up to a pull station every 300’ where possible.

Spectrum cable lines cannot share conduit with electric cables as they are strictly a low voltage vendor. They are sometimes able to share existing conduit with the telephone company as long as the conduit is direct from the pole to the home. If the conduit goes to a splice location or pull station where the telco access it to service multiple homes, Spectrum will not be able to use that path and requires a separate pathway. In this example, if the conduit is a direct line from the pole to the house, the homeowner could have a pull string placed in the conduit ahead of time.

Committee Members

Susan Bates
Jeff Boulet, Chair

Jerry Hall, Select Board Member
Alane Kennedy, St George CDC
John Maltais
Van Thompson