BUCKHANNON – The City of Buckhannon is considering a partnership with Micrologic that would allow Festival Friday vendors and other individuals who use Jawbone Park to enjoy reliable public wireless internet access in the downtown park.
Emiel Butcher, an owner and president of the Buckhannon-based internet, phone and security system company, approached council at its regular meeting Tuesday with a proposal to manage the city’s intranet wireless network, also known as the city’s private wireless internet network.
Butcher said Micrologic operates the largest commercial wireless internet network in Upshur County and eight other surrounding counties.
“What we’re looking to offer the city, is we would like to take over management of the city’s intranet wireless network for a sum total of zero dollars,” Butcher said, noting Micrologic currently provides free wi-fi at the Event Center at Brushy Fork as well as the Upshur County Recreation Pool and Park Complex.
“This would mean we would provide wireless internet at Jawbone Park for Festival Fridays vendors so they could have a reliable connection and be able to accept payments with debit and credit cards,” Butcher said.
So, what’s in it for Micrologic?
As it turns out, smoother connections for current Micrologic customers; Butcher said Micrologic would like to perform a community service while also replacing the city’s current private network, which sometimes hinders the company’s connections in particular areas.
“The only thing that we ask is that we can tout it as a joint effort between Micrologic and the City of Buckhannon as a way to give back to the community,” Butcher explained. “We have several hundred customers in and around the City of Buckhannon and Upshur County, and the wireless network that the city has, that it runs its private network on, actually impedes with our ability to do business in certain areas.”
Butcher noted Micrologic would be installing 19 new transmitter sites within the next year-and-a-half as part of the Community Connect Broadband Grant, which will connect 3,500 households and businesses in Barbour, Randolph and Upshur counties to the internet.
“We’re going to have extremely good coverage,” he said, adding that a Public Service District in Barbour County trusts the company to carry its data. As part of the proposed agreement, Micrologic would like to install a few webcams at various locations in downtown Buckhannon, Butcher said.
Buckhannon mayor David McCauley asked Butcher to present a proposal to council by its July 18 meeting.
“Work us up a proposal by our next meeting in July, and we’ll designate a committee to examine the proposal,” McCauley said.