The 2016 Municipal Technology Conference is coming up on Thursday, May 5th, 2016 at the Augusta Civic Center in the state capital. The conference is sponsored by the Maine Municipal Association (MMA) and the Maine GIS UserGroup (MEGUG) in cooperation with Maine’s ConnectME Authority.
The conference title - “Ready. Set. Grow!” - captures one of the major themes of the conference, where several panel sessions will focus on the topic of municipal networks. Several Maine communities, including Rockport, Sanford, Orono and Old Town, and Bar Harbor, have made progress in the past couple of years toward creating locally-grown fiber networks.
Some notable people appearing as panelists and presenters at the conference include:
Jeff Letourneau - As the Executive Director of Networkmaine, Mr. Letourneau oversees the University of Maine’s cyber-infrastructure. He has been involved in numerous network initiatives in Maine including the first Internet connection project in Maine in the 1980s, the first K-12 school and public library network (MSLN) in the US in the 1990s, and he co-authored a federal Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) grant that led to a $25 million loan for Maine’s middle-mile network, the Three Ring Binder. Letourneau is also a member of the ConnectMaine Authority Advisory Board and a former member of the Maine State Legislature’s Broadband Strategy Council.
Sue Inches - As a Senior Consultant for Tilson Technology Company, a Maine-based network construction and consulting company, Sue Inches has helped communities to successfully navigate the political waters of planning for municipal network projects for more than 20 years. She has also served in various other private and governmental positions, including a post as Deputy Director of the State Planning Office, a state agency that performs policy analysis and research for municipal projects.
Representatives from several Maine communities in various stages of developing municipally-owned networks will also appear at the conference, including:
- Steven Buck - City Manager for the City of Sanford
- Steve Cornell - Technical Systems Administrator for the Town of Bar Harbor
- Belle Ryder - Assistant Manager for the Town of Orono
Appearing as a presenter will be Brian Lippold, the Director Broadband/Telecom Consulting for the James W. Sewall Company, an engineering company that has been working with the Maine Town of Fort Fairfield on a fiber network feasibility study.
Those interested in attending the conference can register and find additional details online. The cost of attending the conference is:
- $70 for MMA Member Municipalities/Patrons/Non-Profits/State Agencies, MEGUG Members, or ConnectME Authority Affiliates
- $140 for Non Member Municipalities
- $100 for Business Representatives