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Oroville plans faster Internet – Chico Enterprise-Record

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OROVILLE – Copper Internet, go for it.

Oroville City Council voted Tuesday to accept a $500,000 grant to plan fiber optic broadband upgrades in the city.

Deputy Planner Daniel Kopshever said the funding will go towards pre-construction planning costs for fiber optic broadband access to unserved and underserved areas of Oroville.

“I believe the idea was a vision of Mayor Linda Dahlmeier and she really pushed for it during her eight years of service,” Mayor Chuck Reynolds said. “It’s good to see it come to fruition.”

The project will identify locations in the city that lack access to adequate Internet services and the infrastructure needed to provide the services.

The funding comes from a grant from the California Public Utilities Commission under Senate Bill 156 passed in July 2021, which allocated $6 billion to roll out broadband statewide.

“While there are several methods of getting high-speed or high-speed internet, it is fiber optic infrastructure that can be used for more than just internet services,” Kopshever said. “It is scalable for the future and compatible with other SB 156 funding sources.”

Kopshever said the network would be “open access,” meaning providers would have to compete with each other to use the infrastructure rather than being the sole operator setting its own prices.

The Golden State Connect Authority will manage the grant and project development on behalf of Oroville. The city would be a project advisor providing information, local knowledge and support, Kopshever said.

Kopshever said the program will be able to leverage existing fiber optic infrastructure in the city.

Although the grant will fund pre-construction planning costs, it will not go towards construction or the purchase of equipment.

The project will be eligible for more grants in the future, including funding for the construction of midstream and last-mile infrastructure that would be owned and operated by the state.

Kopshever said the project is expected to be completed within 24 months of grant approval.

Code enforcement

Oroville Council voted to adopt its updated 2022 Code Enforcement Department Procedures Manual.

Code enforcement director Ron Belser said the last time the procedure manual was written was in 2014.

Belser said the updated procedures manual will help code enforcement avoid inconsistencies, provide employees with instructions for handling specific work-related situations, and support the department’s mission.

Belser has received praise from several councilors for the work of the citywide Code Enforcement Department removing camps and trailers from public and private properties.

Belser said ahead of cleanups, Butte County Behavioral Health and its Housing Navigator are on hand to help connect people to resources.

“I just got some responses from South Oroville voters,” Councilwoman Janet Goodson said. “They say they love, they appreciate everything you do.”

City Attorney Scott Huber said the updated code enforcement procedure manual will be used as an example for use in other jurisdictions.

other business

The board approved several items in its consent schedule, including:

  • A second reading of a zoning change to support development of existing slum lots in South Oroville
  • A second reading of a zoning code amendment to remove unenforceable provisions and other requirements as prerequisites for development on substandard lots.
  • Motor replacement for Oroville Fire at a cost of $19,216.99.
  • Reimbursement of a surveillance system taken as evidence by the Butte County Sheriff for an investigation involving a Greyhound bus shooting that occurred on February 2, 2022 at a cost of $8,386.66.
  • Authorized a city-wide compensation study to compare the city’s current salaries and benefits to those of other cities of similar size.

The council also proclaimed November 2022 Homeless and Runaway Youth Awareness Month in the Town of Oroville.

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