Broadband In Connecticut
On this page:
Rural Connecticut and Broadband
- Connecticut Commission on Education Technology (CET)
- The Nutmeg Network
- The Connecticut Education Network (CEN)
- Government Management Informational Sciences (GMIS)
- Connecticut's Open Data initiative and Chief Data Officer
Rural Connecticut and Broadband
•CTgig Project and Rural Connecticut's Lack of Access to Broadband
•Distributed antenna systems ("DAS", "small cell systems")
•Statistics about Rural America and Uses by Farmers of Broadband
The first recommendation from the report focused on state organization. CASE identified a lack of coordination and communication among state entities responsible for broadband policy as an impediment to the development of an effective broadband plan and policy. In an effort improve broadband coordination and communication, the report called for the creation of:
“A formal communication structure for developing and sustaining broadband policy, strategy, and promotion, in the form of a broadband cabinet, be created to enhance economic development and leadership opportunities in Connecticut.”
To achieve this end, it was recommended that the broadband cabinet be comprised of representatives from existing state agencies THAT can impact broadband policy. It was also recommended that the State appoint a broadband coordinator to develop and advance the goals of the strategic broadband plan.
Connecticut Commission on Education Technology (CET)
Since the publication of the CASE report, a formal cabinet focused on coordinating the development of a broadband policy has not been created. However, the Connecticut Commission on Education Technology (CET) is an organized legislatively mandated body involved in coordinating the development of broadband policies in an effort to advance the expansion of broadband across the state.
The CET was mandated by the legislature to create a five year plan for the CEN with the goal of providing state-of-the-art, high-speed, reliable Internet access and video, voice and data transmissions that electronically link all educational institutions in the state, including public and independent institutions of higher education, the state’s libraries and all elementary, middle and secondary schools and other institutions including businesses, job centers and community organizations.
The CET is comprised of many state leaders who can impact broadband policy including:
* The Chief Information Officer for the State
* The Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development
* A representative from the University of Connecticut (UCONN)
* A representative from the State Library System
* The Information Technology Director for the Office of Policy and Management
* The State Broadband Policy Coordinator from the Office of the Consumer Counsel
* A representative from the Connecticut State Department of Education
* A representative from the Connecticut Board of Regents
* A representative from the Connecticut Conference of Independent Colleges
* A representative from the Connecticut Association of Board of Education
* A representative from the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities
* A representative from the Connecticut Council of Small Towns
* A representative from the Connecticut Library Association
* A representative from the Governor’s Office
* The Speaker of the House
* Minority Leader of the House
* A representative from the Department of Administrative Services.
The Nutmeg Network
The Nutmeg Network is comprised of two sub-entities: the Connecticut Education Network (CEN) and the Public Safety Data Network (PSDN).
The CET governs the Nutmeg Network, which is responsible for expanding availability and access of high speed networks in the State, including broadband networks.
The Connecticut Education Network (CEN)
The CEN, which is dedicated to delivering reliable, high-speed internet access for its members, is highly involved in coordinating and shaping broadband strategies. Currently, CEN members include educational institutions, libraries, and government entities across Connecticut.
Since 2011, the CET and the CEN have implemented strategies focused on enhancing state organization around broadband policy and have been legislatively mandated to expand broadband access to different entities throughout the state.
Organizing activities include:
* The Nutmeg Network has been legislatively mandated to forge a closer cooperation and seamless functioning among the three sub-networks.
* The Nutmeg Network has also been legislatively mandated to expand the CEN network to municipalities and regional council of governments (COGs), thereby expanding its mission of providing high speed networks to non-educational institution users. This mandate allows for the fostering of new relationships and will create synergies with municipal and COG users.
* The CEN is in the midst of developing a formal strategic plan. Goals outlined in the plan that focus on state organization include:
* The creation of a governance structure among different CEN network entities to address legislation (PA 13-247).
* The creation of synergies among Nutmeg Network entities (The CEN also has the intent to dovetail with other Nutmeg Network sub entities to create a comprehensive Nutmeg Network strategic plan in the future);
* Collaboration with the Connecticut Government Management Information Sciences (GMIS) to implement the 2 year connectivity plan for Connecticut municipalities.
* The CEN produces successful CEN annual conferences each spring with the purpose of bringing members together to discuss and learn about technological advances in their field.
* The CET has been legislatively mandated to monitor federal funding opportunities to advance the State’s broadband network. The commission will oversee the state-wide application to the federal Universal Service Fund to enhance the connectivity of the CEN.
Government Management Informational Sciences (GMIS)
The mission of International GMIS is to provide an organizational structure and network with associated activities, which may be used by all State, County, and Local government agencies and educational institutions which are members in order to help them in their information and automation endeavors and with associated projects and problems.
GMIS and CEN are establishing collaborative relationships with municipalities to help towns save money by sharing services13, which will start in 2015.
Connecticut's Open Data initiative and Chief Data Officer
- Connecticut's Open Data initiative was launched in February of 2014 by Executive Order No. 39 of Governor Dannel. P. Malloy.
- The purpose of the order is to provide open access to data in its rawest form, before it has been aggregated and analyzed.
- Analysts, academics, entrepreneurs and all members of the public will have the opportunity to use open data. The online data portal gives users the opportunity to visualize data through graphs or charts and on maps when applicable.
- The executive order instructs agency heads to make public data openly available while continuing to safeguard information that must be kept secure.