On Wednesday, June 10th, Goochland County announced a newly expanded broadband partnership with Central Virginia Electric Cooperative (CVEC) and their wholly-owned subsidiary Central Virginia Services, Inc. (CVSI) which operates Firefly Fiber Broadband.
Ultimately it will lead to the expansion of fiber-to-the-premise for 2,691 locations including 300 businesses in western Goochland. The partnership originally dates to 2019 and earlier when CVEC began discussing their Rural Broadband Project to expand 3,500 miles of fiber optic lines throughout their service territory.
In September 2019 Goochland County, the Goochland County Economic Development Authority, CVEC, and CVSI executed an initial broadband incentive agreement to provide financial assistance, through tax rebates, to improve the availability of broadband throughout their service territory. This initial agreement began the formal partnerships to expand fiber optic broadband into CVEC’s Cartersville and Shannon Hill substation areas.
Moving forward CVEC and Firefly will be expanding on 3 different fronts in Goochland. CVEC and Firefly have been successful in pursuing a Connect America Fund (CAF) award from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as well as an award from the ReConnect program through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to help finance the fiber buildout within the CVEC electric service territory. Outside of the CVEC electric territory, Firefly will serve several hundred homes with its commitment under the CAF program. Firefly has also applied for a second award under the USDA Broadband ReConnect program. The areas covered within the CVEC territory, areas covered by the CAF commitment and the new areas covered by the ReConnect application together expand to 2,691 total locations in Goochland County that will have gigabit speed service available through Firefly. Build out of the CVEC electric territory will be complete by 2023, and the entire project area will be built out within 5 years should all funding be approved.
CVEC and Firefly officially announced today their current USDA RUS Broadband ReConnect 2020 grant application that was submitted in mid-April 2020. The county worked through March and April to help complete the application and successfully submit it. If successful it will expand fiber optic lines to 1,547 of the 2,691 locations in western Goochland.
Ultimately 300 plus commercial businesses, home businesses, and farmers & producers will be served by fiber optic lines once CVEC and Firefly complete their existing plans for broadband expansion in Goochland.
Citizens can learn more about these efforts by visiting www.goochlandva.us and www.mycvec.com. Those interested in supporting Firefly’s USDA RUS Broadband ReConnect 2020 grant application can do so by sharing the critical need for broadband in Goochland by visiting https://www.usda.gov/reconnect/contact-us.
A copy of the presentation by CVEC and Firefly is available at this link.
Central Virginia Electric Cooperative is a member-owned, not-for-profit, electric utility serving almost 37,000 homes, farms and businesses in the rural portions of 14 Virginia counties. CVEC is proud to be a Four-Star Cooperative for Service Excellence certified by the Touchstone Energy Service Excellence Program. CVEC is an equal opportunity provider and employer. For more information, visit www.mycvec.com.
Headquartered in Palmyra, VA, Firefly Fiber BroadbandSM is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Central Virginia Electric Cooperative. Firefly offers lightning fast internet via fiber to the premise that is reliable and priced fairly with no hidden equipment costs or price increases. Firefly has no contracts, no data caps or slowdowns and offers symmetrical upload and download speeds. Firefly Light offers 100 mbps for $49.99; Firefly Flash offers 1 gbps for $79.99; and Firefly Voice is $35.99 with a $5.00 discount when bundled with the internet. For more information, visit www.fireflyva.com.