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Published: 2006-03-01 00:00:00

Local Authority Shared Services has secured a $50,000 grant from central government to help with a plan to improve broadband access across the Waikato region.

Local Authority Shared Services is a partnership between 13 councils in the greater Waikato area, including Environment Waikato.

It is currently working to facilitate the delivery of a high speed, high capacity, low-cost broadband service to the Waikato region.

“We are working with a number of parties to test the feasibility of this from a financial, environmental and social perspective,” said Local Authority Shared Services business development executive Michael Holland.

The company lodged a successful expression of interest in the government’s Broadband Challenge scheme in January. The scheme aims to accelerate the provision of affordable broadband services to regional centres and previously unconnected areas.

On 23 February, the government awarded Local Authority Shared Services a $50,000 grant, which will be used to help the company develop a comprehensive application for further government funding.

“This is a great example of Waikato councils collaborating for regional benefit,” said Local Authority Shared Services CEO Jim McLeod.

“We are expecting to complete a business case for this by mid-May.”