The Orange County Board of Commissioners filled the five public openings on its new Orange County Broadband Task Force at its Feb. 2 business meeting.
The appointed members are: Vasu Kilaru, Paul Cardillo, Todd Broucksou, Patricia Hull and Terri Buckner. The five were chosen from among 35 applicants.
Commissioners Earl McKee, who petitioned for the creation of the task force, and Sally Greene were chosen to represent the BOCC on the 12-member task force. The other members are: Deputy County Manager Travis Myren, Doug Noell, Chief IT Operations Officer Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, Dr. Monique Felder or Dr. Kathleen Dawson of Orange County Public Schools, Jeff Sural, Director NC Broadband Infrastructure Office (NC BIO), and Victoria P. Deaton, Compliance Specialist Office of Institutional Equity and Inclusion at Durham Tech.
The task force was created in 2020 after a petition submitted by Commissioner Earl McKee.
“My primary reason for bringing this was because of the school shutdown and my concern over the fact that a lot of children were being underserved,” said McKee at the Board’s Nov. 17 business meeting. “It’s not just a school thing. It’s a jobs issue. It’s an issue for everyday living. It affects people who are isolated. I don’t expect the pandemic to last forever, but it has changed the dynamics of how we live. We have become extremely dependent on these electronic devices.”
The Board also adopted a charge for the task force:
- Discuss broadband solutions that will improve the quality of high speed internet services to Orange County residents
- Recommend a plan to the Board of Orange County Commissioners that will expand reliable high-speed internet services to all County residents and businesses.
The task force may consider other issues not related to items 1 or 2, at its discretion. The panel is scheduled to hold its first meeting March 3 at 5:30 p.m.