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Wayside will have hotspot/camera system installed

Wayside will have hotspot/camera system installed Wayside will have hotspot/camera system installed

Lake Holcombe Town Board

By Ginna Young Ntera and the Town of Lake Holcombe, are partnering to offer two internet hotspots and cameras, at the Wayside Park beach and pavilion areas. The cost of the installation is around $4,900, with annual fees an additional cost. The project has been in the works for several months, and came to fruition during a regular board meeting Aug. 13. Patrick Viergutz, president of the Lake Holcombe Improvement Association (LHIA), was on hand to help facilitate the project. Viergutz says when the LHIA learned of the project, the group thought it was a great idea for safety and security on the lake. “After conferring…we’ve decided we’d like to donate $2,000 to this project,” said Viergutz. “We felt that it was a good amount to kind of help get this project going.” He said the association recognized that boaters and snowmobilers would be able to utilize the hotspots to call for help in an emergency. Viergutz said living along the park, he knows that internet can be spotty at best. Board chairman Brian Guthman said there is an option for the town to charge a fee to use the internet, so when someone logs in, Ntera not only has their IP address, but also a name and address. The fee for using the internet would be 99 cents and charged to the user’s credit card. “So, if someone tries to download stuff they’re not supposed to and all that kind of thing, it makes it a lot easier to find out who is on it,” said Guthman. “I guess there are some other ways you could do it.” One option would be to spend $300 a year, to put in “blockers,” which restricts what sites people logging in can access. “What would we care what they’re downloading out there?” asked supervisor Doug Olson. “What does that have to do with us?” Guthman said it could make the town liable if something illegal was downloaded. “In that case, I think it’s counter productive for what we’re having that for,” said supervisor David Staudacher. “Believe it or not, some people don’t have credit cards.” Clerk Tracey Larson said with kids possibly logging on at the hotspots, they most likely don’t have a credit card. Viergutz pointed out that in an emergency situation, people may not have time to fumble around entering a credit card to gain access. Guthman said the town wasn’t looking to make money off the fee, but wants to ensure they are not liable and that people don’t have access to illegal sites. “It was for security,” said Guthman. Jim Mataczynski, treasurer, said EMS could also use the hotspot to send a heart EKG to the hospital while in transport. “Without internet, it’s gets a little tough,” he said. “There are delays, same with cell service. To be able to get an EKG into the doctor, emergency room while you’re still out, is huge.” “I don’t disagree…but what is our budget?” asked Olson. Larson said she thinks the town can find the funds to provide the service for free. “I think we should find it in our budget,” said Guthman. “If we need to trim something else, I think we should find it for the safety of our community.” To help with expenses, a private citizen agreed to donate the $300 for the first three years of the service contract. All that was left to decide, was if the project could be completed in phases, but Ben Jordan, town roadman, says he thinks that would only increase the cost, as Ntera would have to come back to install more fiber optic line. Members agreed it’s an important safety service to have and voted to go ahead with the project. “I think it’s a win-win thing,” said Guthman. “There isn’t a reason everyone shouldn’t be able to get decent internet, at a decent price.” In other business, members looked at the Cornell-Lake Holcombe Camaraderie Club’s request to use the town hall for weekly meetings, as they are no longer able to use schools to meet. Guthman said the town hasn’t let people use the hall, over concerns that the number of people in the building will be over the recommended limit. “That seems like that’s a small group,” said Guthman of the Camaraderie Club. As long as the group wears masks and social distances, Guthman said there will be no charge to use the hall. “You can tell them they can come here for that,” said Guthman to Larson. Community Ed classes were also given the go ahead, as long as participants follow guidelines and understand that internet access is not provided. Guthman also reported that a recycling grant was received in the amount of $1,851.28 cents, to help with the town’s recycling costs. If residents want to clean out their garages, the town’s fall recycling round-up is set for Saturday, Sept. 12. No building materials will be accepted at the event. (Cutline) Patrick Viergutz, president of the Lake Holcombe Improvement Association, speaks about donating money for a camera system at the Wayside Park, before the Lake Holcombe Town Board Aug. 13. Photo by Ginna Young