WVLS and IFLS initiated a “Requested for Information” (RFI) from Charter as we are preparing for a potential E-rate project in 2017-2018. This is intended to improve WAN services at Charter sites.

Charter is committing significant resources to full site assessments on most WVLS and IFLS libraries to get detailed cost estimates for fiber and high quality data circuits (similar to what BCN provides).

Our intent is to get some ballpark information, assess feasibility of a 2017 project, then communicate with libraries if such a project made sense, and work on an E-rate fundable project to upgrade services at libraries using Charter.

We’ve asked them to cease assessments for a few specific libraries in IFLS and for MCPL and its branches for now.  However, since they’re willing to do the work, we’ve left the rest of the sites open to inquiry.  DPI advised that it’s good practice to cost-compare BCN to similar alternative services regularly anyway.

If any of you (BCN or otherwise) would prefer that we ask Charter to cease site assessments for your library, please let Joshua Klingbeil know by emailing help@librarieswin.org.  

Otherwise, for those libraries currently utilizing Charter Business cable services, please look forward to receiving an E-rate project proposal before mid-February.  Preliminary hints from Charter are that an E-rate project may indeed be cost-feasible.  For those of you currently on BCN, please expect to see a site cost assessment report by the end of February, comparing against BCN services.

Submitted by Joshua Klingbeil.